Sports Betting Bills Passed in Louisiana, Maryland, and South Dakota

Joshua Clarke

Amidst all of the presidential election tension, three states went on to legalize sports betting in the US. This development has significantly increased the US sports betting market, and soon, sports betting action will likely kick-off proper in 2021 in these states.

Louisiana, Maryland, and South Dakota are the states that have joined the 20 other US states to legalize sports betting. As progress is being made by each state to legalize sports wagering, it won’t be long before we witness over half of the US states legalizing sports betting.

This momentum is great for the sports betting industry in the US as its growth will propel the industry to achieve even greater things. About six more states have their sports wagering bills currently working its way through congress. It is anticipated that before 2021 is over some good news will be reported from each of those states.

Moving Forward

South Dakota

The issue of legalizing sports betting in South Dakota has lingered for a while but is now sorted. On the 4th of November 2020, the bill was finally passed with 59%-41% in favor of legalizing sports betting. In Deadwood and all other 11 tribal casinos in the state, sports betting is now officially legal.

On the back of this development, there is potential for operators to offer online sports betting. Initially, the mindset was that only physical casinos will offer sports betting but it is more likely that operators can have a physical presence and also launch online betting across the state. It is all in its early stages so as regulations and developments unfold, we all will know the direction in which the state has decided to go in.

Maryland

It took only 75% of the votes to be counted in Maryland to rule in favor of legalizing sports betting. An overwhelming majority voted “yes” for the bill, and all that is left is for the state to draft her regulation rules. We are all expecting a launch as soon as the industry sees that DraftKings and FanDuel have already started leading campaigns in the state. That said, you should expect to see both industry giants on the scene as soon as Maryland launches. According to estimates, around $18 million will be generated from sports betting for the state. It is reported that a 20% clip will be charged as tax, and 19% of that will go for education funding. The remaining 1% will be allocated to the minority business enterprise program.

Louisiana

On Tuesday, a total of 55 Louisiana Parishes out of the 64 in the state all voted in favor of sports betting. All that is left for state lawmakers is to sort out the details of how the industry will be regulated. It might take a while, but the good thing is that progress is being made to have sports betting up-and-running in the state. It is a very dicey situation here as some conservative lawmakers might fight against the launch. A similar scenario played out in 2018, where daily fantasy sports was legalized but was not able to launch because of the back and forth on full display during the formulation of regulations. Hopefully, the same thing does not happen with sports betting.

No feedback is expected until after the Louisiana lawmakers come back in session in April 2021. If it all goes well, sports betting might eventually launch after the football season.

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