The Revenue-Starved States could Turn to Sportsbook Legalization during Pandemic
Many revenue-starved states might turn to legalized sports betting and online gambling to reduce their budget deficits. Although most professional sports leagues are inactive due to the coronavirus, Asian baseball and European soccer started their seasons.
Also, NASCAR held weekend races, and the PGA Tour will restart within two weeks. The NHL and NBA are planning for the resumption of their seasons as well. It is good news for sportsbooks across the nation and states looking for higher tax revenue.
The coronavirus will accelerate the expansion of online casinos and sports betting across the nation. Both activities provide revenue-starved states with new sources of income as they try to recover economically from the outbreak. Further revenue can come from license fees and taxes.
The Revenue-Starved States Looking at Legal Sports Betting
Not everyone is happy with their sports betting revenues. According to bookie pay per head sources, many states with legal sports betting failed to meet their revenue projections. However, with the pandemic disrupting the economy, many states are looking for even a small boost to their budgets.
Based on sportsbook software reports, 18 states and the District of Columbia have legal sports betting. Four states allow online gambling, which includes online casinos, poker, and slot machines.
Tennessee and Virginia passed their sports betting laws, but have yet to launch sportsbooks in their territories. A political forum stated that North Carolina allows tribal casinos to accept wagers on games. Washington is waiting for regulations that will enable tribal casinos to offer sports betting. Also, Oklahoma passed the law to allow sports betting in tribal casinos. However, the casinos are still waiting for approval from federal authorities.
Among the states without legal sports betting, Ohio, Massachusetts, and Louisiana are potential candidates that would legalize the activity later this year. Louisiana is waiting for lawmakers to approve a referendum on sports betting. On the other hand, Ohio legislators are acting on a bill to legalize sports betting in the state.
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