Ohio lawmakers hope to pass sports betting bill this month

State Rep. Bill Seitz has indicated the sports betting proposal could see a conference committee vote next week.

If the House and the Senate approves sports betting before the year ends, it could be launched by January 1, 2023.

US.- Lawmakers in Ohio may have reached an agreement to finally legalise sports betting in the state. State Rep. Bill Seitz (R-Cincinnati), said he and other legislators at the Capitol in Columbus could soon come to a consensus on a bill. If it’s approved, sports wagering could begin by January 1, 2023.

Seitz has indicated the sports betting proposal could come up for a conference committee vote next week. The bill would have to win approval from the full Legislature before going to Gov. Mike DeWine for his consideration. DeWine has indicated he could support a sports betting measure.

“We want to be sure to give the Casino Control Commission adequate time to do all of the vetting that they are charged with doing under this bill, and we also want to make sure that everyone starts at the same starting point. We’re not going to have some people get to market quicker than other people, that’s not fair, we’re all going to start at the same starting point,” Seitz said.

Lawmakers have debated whether the Casino Control Commission or the Ohio Lottery Commission should have oversight over sports gambling. At the moment there are four casinos in Ohio and seven racetracks with slot machines. The industry employs almost 20,000 workers and has a statewide economic impact of $3.61bn. The state has professional teams in football, basketball, baseball, hockey and soccer.

HB 29

HB 29 proposes three types of sports betting licences:

  • Type A licences for state entities that have the ability to bank a bet, such as the state’s 11 casinos and racinos. 
  • Type B licences for future brick-and-mortar sportsbooks. 
  • Type C licences for sports betting kiosks in retail establishments with D-class liquor licenses.

The bill allows for 65 licences in total: 25 online sports betting licences and 40 retail sportsbook licences. There is still time for it to be passed this year. Ohio’s legislature can run until December 31.

See also: Ohio hopes to revive sports betting bill

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