States eye sports betting, wrestle with regulatory details
Published 8:58 am Wednesday, November 28, 2018
NEW YORK — Numerous U.S. states are considering jumping on the legal sports betting bandwagon, even as they struggle with the details of regulating it.
How much to tax it, and how to regulate mobile betting on phones are emerging as thorny issues for states.
So far, seven states offer legal sports betting: Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, West Virginia, Mississippi, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. And although New Mexico has not passed a sports betting law, the Santa Ana Star Casino & Hotel started taking sports bets last month through a tribal gambling compact.
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At a sports betting conference Tuesday in New York, state representatives from Minnesota, New York and Ohio discussed their states’ interest in such bets. They’re also interested in making sure players are protected, taxes are adequate but not punitive and that mobile gambling is widely accessible.
Patrick Garofalo, a Minnesota state representative, said the betting public knows exactly what it wants, and it’s up to states and gambling companies to give it to them.
“The American sports fan has made a decision: they want to be able to bet on their favorite sports teams from their home,” he said. “They want to do it from their couch.”
The illegal, unregulated sports betting market is vast; Sara Slane, senior vice president of the American Gaming Association, cited estimates ranging from $150 billion to $500 billion.