Mobile betting could still come to Mississippi after State Representative Cedric Burnett brought a bill to legalise it forward.
The intention for House Bill 172 (HB172) is to change the Gaming Control Act’s current definition of a sports pool. The legislation, endorsed by Burnett, would also seek to define a platform as the following:
“A person or entity that operates a sports pool or racebook over the internet.”
Retrying in 2020
The prospect of wagering via mobile in the Southern US state was put forward last year, via HB1481. Accompanying it was another bill, S2667. However, things never moved forward to a committee hearing.
In December 2019, Mississippi reported a year-on-year betting revenue decline of 43.7%. So, it’s possible that legislators could be convinced to make a change this time around.
Conditions of the proposed bill
Online and mobile sports betting revenue above $134,000 would be taxed at 6% GGR. This would be alongside the 8% rate on all other revenue forms.
The definition of a sports pool would be expanded to include a range of betting forms. These include single-game bets, teasers, parlays,, pools, exchange wagering and in-play betting. However, fantasy sports wouldn’t form part of this.
If HB172 is passed, it would come into force from July 1st 2020. Thus, it would be possible for mobile betting to go live before 2021.
Current betting regulations in Mississippi
As things stand, Mississippi does allow gambling – but only in limited forms. For starters, all online gambling is illegal. It’s also one of just six US states without a state lottery.
The state does, however, allow land-based casino wagering and charity bingo.
Brick-and-mortar casino wagering is big, providing over 37,000 jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in annual tax revenue. It’s therefore possible that traffic opportunities exist for affiliates, should the state choose to adopt a more liberal digital betting approach.