The state of Michigan has originally thought of allowing online sports betting in 2021 but reports say there is a chance to do that sooner.
The local gambling regulatory body – the Michigan Gaming and Control Board (MGCB) – has already started to accept applications for offering online gambling services, as it has been hoping to give a start to the online betting campaign because live sports are returning to Michigan.
Richard S. Kalm, the executive director of the state’s gambling watchdog, explained that the MGCB had taken the upcoming launch of online gambling one step further with the beginning of the licensing process. Mr. Kalm shared that the regulatory encouraged suppliers to file their applications so that the Michigan Gaming and Control Board could conduct its investigations and start the procedure of issuing provisional licenses.
The state’s gambling regulatory body has been given the right to issue provisional licenses for all gaming and sports betting suppliers other than platform providers, as the latter can still participate in the competition for licenses when the rules for online gambling are finally made.
As explained by Mr. Kalm, other forms will be added to the website of MGCB after the regulator processes feedback from stakeholders on the proposed rules. He noted that the watchdog continued to make progress on rule promulgation regarding online gambling and sports betting services, with the aforementioned forms of gambling expected to be released by early 2021. He further noted that it could happen sooner.
Michigan Lawmaker Says a November-December Online Betting Release Date Is Possible
The official start of sports betting services in the state took place less than a week before casino venues in Michigan were ordered to cease operations because of the new coronavirus pandemic. Taking this into consideration, the chance for online gambling to be released in the state sooner than initially expected would probably be well received, especially in larger markets, such as the one of Detroit, where three state casinos are hosted. Currently, they still remain temporarily closed because of the social isolation and lockdown measures aimed at tackling the further spread of the infection.
The commercial casinos in Michigan gathered only $105,548 in the period, with sports betting and without online betting available to local punters. According to some local lawmakers, the process of drafting the rules for mobile gambling could start over the next couple of weeks or so, with the final steps of the process possible to be made by the end of the year.
As explained by Representative Brandt Iden, who has been one of the main proponents of legal sports betting services in Michigan, online sports betting with mobile sports, online gambling and poker at the local commercial and tribal casinos, could be launched in November or December 2020, ahead of the schedule for the beginning of 2021.
The Governor of the state, Gretchen Whitmer, has given the green light for reopening of some parts of the state. However, there has still been no update regarding the reopening of the commercial casinos in Detroit.