Two more US states have made moves towards the potential legalisation of sports betting: South Dakota and Maryland.
If South Dakota’s secures a governor signature, a referendum will be needed to determine its passing into law.
Bill SJR501 has passed through the House by a vote of 36-27. Originally introduced by Senator Bob Ewing in January, it will now be passed through the House. The South Dakota Senate had themselves voted to pass the bill last month.
The legislation will now require the signature of Governor Kristi Noem. But even if she approves, a referendum will be required before anything becomes official law. This would be held at the election, taking place in November.
At the moment, all forms of gambling in South Dakota are banned – with a few exceptions. These are roulette, keno, craps, limited card games and slot machines. Bets must be placed within the city limits of Deadwood.
If sports betting is legalised, this would also become allowed within the same city limits. But the bill doesn’t reveal any further details in relation to the regulation of this vertical.
In Maryland, an amended bill to regulate sports betting has cleared a first vote in the Senate Committee for Budget & Taxation.
Senate Bill 4 was introduced in January and one of two bills to legalise sports betting that were proposed. Craig Zucker put the legislation forward.
Amendments to Zucker’s bill were proposed by various committee members.
If the bill is passed, sports betting at three racetracks – Pimlico Racecourse, Laurel Park and Maryland State Fairgrounds – would be permitted.
This vertical would also be allowed at “a stadium located in Prince George’s county that is used primarily for professional football”. The arena in question is FedEx Field, where NFL outfit the Washington Redskins play.
It’s probable that this regulation is an attempt to dissuade the Redskins from moving to a stadium within District of Columbia, since regulations in said jurisdiction also allow for in-stadium betting.
Licences would be available for $2.5 million under Zucker’s bill. Moreover, a 20% tax rate and annual renewal fee of $250,000 would also be applied. Online operators would be able to offer sports betting on behalf of an existing licensed brand in this vertical, but must pay a licence fee of at least $5,000 to do so.
Like in South Dakota, the Maryland public would get a final say in its regulation.