Michigan Online Casinos & Sports Betting Could soon be live
Online Casinos & Sports Betting could get the go-ahead in Michigan this month
Following news that a state legislative committee has approved online gaming and MI sports betting rules, some well-known online gaming and sportsbook operators are expected to be ready to go this month. It appears likely the online gaming industry will launch in the Wolverine State this month. The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR), earlier this week waived the required 15 session days for the final draft of the rules to be presented to the committee.
Initially, the approval process had been delayed so the JCAR could decide whether to approve the waiver request from the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB). With that request now approved, the MGCB can send the rules to the Office of the Great Seal.
The process for issuing licenses is likely to take at least two weeks, so players in Michigan will not be able to bet on sports or play casino games in MI on their mobile devices instantly. The MGCB has been accepting internet gaming and sports betting operator license applications since July.
Operators have the option of partnering with the three commercial casinos in Detroit and any tribal casinos in the state to get market access in Michigan. Residents can expect to choose between DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, PointsBet, Barstool Sports, and William Hill.
Next Phase for Michigan
Once the state files the final rules and regulations, it will be up to the casino and sportsbook applicants, along with their partners, to gain final licensing approval. All operators must submit approval letters from independent test labs, which are then handed to the MGCB. The MGCB then has the task of ensuring all of the platforms and operations meet the technical requirements before issuing a license and setting a launch date.
Michigan may decide to launch numerous operators simultaneously, in a similar fashion to what Tennessee did on November 1. Alternatively, it could allow operators to launch after receiving the proper approvals. In November, Richard Kalm, MGCB Executive Director, stated that the expected launch date would be “completely determined by when the JCAR finalizes the rules.”
Timing is Perfect
People began betting in-person at casinos at the start of spring before the pandemic forced all gaming properties to close in March. They were eventually allowed to re-open with capacity limits in place (15%). The retail casino sportsbooks posted an October betting handle of $46.1 million, which resulted in $7.6 million generated in revenue.
Unfortunately, a second wave of the pandemic has badly affected the Midwest, meaning the three commercial casinos in Detroit once again had to close on November 18. Seven tribal casinos also closed their doors.
If online gaming is launched later this month, it would be approximately a year since Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed several gambling bills that permitting online poker, online sports betting, and iGaming. This legislation meant that Michigan became the first state to have both tribal and commercial casinos to have sportsbooks, poker, and casinos.
Because both mobile gaming and sports betting are permitted in Michigan, the state could grow to be one of the country’s most progressive gaming locations.
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