The US Supreme Court is expected to soon announce its decision to the New Jersey sports betting case. If a ruling is made in favour of the state, a number of US states, including Connecticut, would be given the chance to add sports betting options to their gambling legislation and legally offer it to their residents.
The state of Connecticut has been looking forward to hearing the US Supreme Court decision, since expanding its gambling landscape would help it boost its revenues. By the end of the week, a vote seeking the approval and taxation of online lottery and sports betting services is to be carried out at the local Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee.
Back on Monday, the afore-mentioned legislature’s Committee saw hours of public testimony on the matter, along with its proposal to impose a 15% tax on sports betting gross revenue to be paid by operators. Reportedly, the sports betting operator Sportech, which is based in New Haven, has estimated that the state of Connecticut could generate overall tax revenues of approximately $100 million over the five years after sports betting is legalized.
However, the 15% tax on sports betting companies, which was proposed by local legislature, has faced some opposition. A number of companies, including Sportech and William Hill US, have questioned the proposed tax, saying that a 15% tax would probably not be the best tax rate for both the state and the local industry. According to the Vice President of William Hill US’ Strategy and Business Development division, Dan Shapiro, such a level of taxation would make it hard for the legal operators to place sports betting offerings’ prices to compete the ones offered at the black market.
Sports Betting to Change Connecticut Legal Landscape
For the time being, Nevada is the only state where sports betting services in the US are legal. As CasinoGamesPro has already reported, the US Supreme Court ruling is eagerly expected by local gambling operators, as it would open sports betting market to other states. The court’s ruling on the New Jersey sports betting case is probably to be released by the summer of 2018.
In case that a ruling in favour of sports wagering is made and the General Assembly gives its approval, the stat of Connecticut would see such services being offered by local race-tracks and casinos, as well as by the state lottery and some other companies. The Lottery Corp., which currently operates as a state agency, has backed sports betting legalization and has pledged to provide the entire amount of sports betting profits to the state, after it pays out consumers’ winnings and employees’ salaries.
However, the leaders of the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes, were not so enthusiastic about the possible change in the legal landscape of the state in terms of sports betting services addition. Under a 25-year compact with the state of Connecticut, the two Indian tribal nations were granted with the exclusive right to offer certain forms of gambling in return to 25% tax on their slot machine revenue.