Bill to legalize sports betting in Ohio finally passes state legislature
Ohio State Legislature Approves Sports Gambling Bill
Sports betting in Ohio will get underway in 2023 under a bill approved in the Legislature on Wednesday. Falling under House Bill 29, which the House of Representatives and state Senate unanimously approved, sports betting will launch on mobile devices and at brick-and-mortar facilities no later than January 1, 2023. A 10% tax will be levied on net sports gaming revenue.
After being cleared following a joint House-Senate Conference Committee on Wednesday, the amended bill progressed to the Senate and House floors for a full vote. After some deliberation, the Senate approved the measure by a vote of 30-1. The House approved the bill on a 72-12 vote.
The next step in the process is for Gov. Mike DeWine to give his signature. This should be a formality as the governor has said he will support sports betting legislation.
Mobile Sports Betting Could Account for 90% of Wagering Activity in Ohio
Per the terms of the bill, a total of 25 “Class A” five-year licenses will be distributed to applicants such as casinos, racinos, and sports teams. This allows them to partner with online gambling operators, state Rep. Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, said on the House floor.
There are four casinos in the Buckeye State and seven racinos, which are horse tracks with slot machines. Seitz said the bill would permit a combined 21 sports teams and the state’s casinos and racinos to join forces with online bookmakers operating up to two “skins.” He said that a total of four casinos, racinos, and sports teams can partner with an online bookmaker to operate one skin.
A skin is the term used to describe an online operator’s website and dedicated smartphone app. Seitz said the first skin would cost $3 million while the second would cost $10 million.
Seitz revealed to Cleveland.com that up to 90% of sports betting in the state could occur on mobile devices such as computers and smartphones. That figure would fall in line with what we are seeing across the country, in which mobile betting dominates the sports wagering market.
From the House floor, Seitz also stated 42 “Class B” licenses would go to casinos, racinos, and sports teams to operate on-site, physical sportsbooks for in-person betting. “Class C” licenses would be given to restaurants, bars, and bowling alleys with an on-premises liquor license. Seitz said these locations would be allowed up to two sports-betting kiosks each. The kiosks would give bettors the opportunity to place proposition bets, moneyline bets, and parlay bets with up to four teams.
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