How Close Is My State To Legalizing Sports Betting?
A bill proposed in January of 2019 would allow for the regulation of sports gambling through a newly-established corporation. The state’s first official sportsbook began operating in July, and there will be multiple others on the way, though the state is still prohibiting mobile online wagering. Oklahoma gaming is dominated by Native American entities and most seem disinclined to agree to sports betting until other key issues with the state government are resolved. Two tribes struck sports betting deals in 2020, but those were later invalidated, part of a larger conflict between competition gaming interests and the government. Hawaii is one of just two states currently without any major gambling entity of any kind, and it seems sports betting will not be coming to the state for the foreseeable future, if ever.
Online sports betting has been legal in RI since its launch in September 2019. Previously, consumers had to register their sports betting account in person at one of the state’s two Twin Rivers casinos. Santa Ana Star, operated by the Pueblo of Santa Ana, took the state’s first retail sports bet on Oct. 16, 2018. Additional tribal gaming centers have followed, including Hilton Buffalo Thunder Sportsbook, The Sportsbook at the Inn of the Mountain Gods, and the Isleta Resort and Casino Sportsbook. With the signing of bill HB 480 into law, Gov. Sununu granted the New Hampshire Lottery control over the local betting industry. Click the quick reference links to find out where sports betting is legal, states moving toward legalization, and those unlikely to act.
If they also played a VLT or a few hands of blackjack, then the presence of sports betting would increase other forms of in-casino gambling revenues. On the other hand, the addition of a sports book could be attractive to existing patrons of the casino who previously played table games or VLTs. In this case, the addition of a sports book would decrease other forms of in-casino gambling revenue. Econometric analysis of the relationship between weekly sports book handle, table game revenues, and VLT revenues can shed light on the importance of displacement in this setting.
Governor Mark Gordon signed sports betting legislation in Wyoming in spring 2021, and we didn’t hear much from the state. Though there was an expected September deadline, the lack of news from the Wyoming Gaming Commission led some to believe that they wouldn’t make the deadline. 40 years down the line, West Virginia once again looked to gambling to increase state revenues.
They can walk into a legal sportsbook or take out their phone to place a bet, knowing their activity and data is safeguarded by state regulators and gaming operators. The results in Table4 set sports book handle equal to zero in weeks when no sports book was operating at a given casino. However, this approach assumes that no sports betting represents a consumer choice, while those zeros actually represent no opportunity for bettors to wager at that casino. The results on Table6 set these values to missing, reducing the sample size.
In other words, the State of West Virginia gained $2.6 million in new tax revenues from legalized sports betting, but gave up $45.4 million in potential, but forgone VLT tax revenues to get this increase. The total impact of legalized sports betting was a net loss of about $42 million in overall gambling-derived tax revenues. This loss suggests that the state should revisit the relative tax rates on sports betting and VLT play. The interruption in sports betting at these two casinos reflected a dispute between the casino operator and the firm contracted to operate the sports book. The shutdown was not related to the performance of the sports book at these two casinos, so it should be plausibly exogenous to unobservable factors affecting VLT handle. Table7 in the appendix contains OLS results for the IV model using VLT revenue as the dependent variable for comparison to the IV results.