The Governor of West Virginia signed a bill that would allow the state’s casinos to offer sports betting if the Supreme Court lifts the national ban.
US.- Governor Jim Justice has signed a bill to legalise sports betting in West Virginia. The legislation indicates that the state’s five casinos will be able to offer sports wagering if the Supreme Court of the United States rules in favour of New Jersey and repeals PASPA, the act that bans the activity on a national level.
The bill signed by Justice would allow sports betting at local licensed casinos, as well as Lottery Commission-approved mobile device apps. The legislation says that 10 per cent of gross receipts will be collected by the state, while it also states that bettors would need to be at least 21 years of age to engage in that activity.
The decision on whether PASPA would be repealed or not will come later this year, but Justice has already asked the Legislature to consider a partnership with major sports leagues, such as the NFL and the NBA. “After the U.S. Supreme Court issues its decision on sports wagering, to address any provisions of the legislation that might be in conflict, I will ask the Legislature to look at the advantages of partnering with the major sports leagues,” Gov. Justice said. “I believe there could be real value to this partnership. I expect the Supreme Court to rule on this issue in the next few months.”
Justice added that this will allow the state to develop a relationship with all the major sports leagues so that it is beneficial to everyone involved. “If there are issues that we can address and make this model legislation that the entire country can use and duplicate, we should do so. Again, nothing can happen until the Supreme Court issues its decision, but we want to be ready when it does,” he added.
PASPA, a sports protection act that was passed in 1992, prevents states from offering gambling lines on sports. Nevada, Oregon, Delaware, and Montana were granted special exemptions, as all four of those states were offering some variation of sports lotteries back in 1992. As New Jersey has taken the demand to the Court, a national approval of sports betting is a serious possibility.