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Ohio’s First Sports Betting Bill Emerges Paving the Way to Legalized Sector

Across the gambling industry of the United States, there is one hot topic at the moment and that is wagering on sports events in a legal manner which has the potential to improve the economic landscape at some of the states. Ohio is one of the regions which has been contemplating the possibility of sports betting legalization on a state level and action has been taken now with the help of a new proposed bill aiming to pave the way for legal sports gambling.

Many businesses in the gambling industry have been eagerly anticipating the official decision of the Supreme Court, as it has the potential to completely change the way gambling is perceived across the states. It is also expected to make sports betting one of the preferred ways of gambling since there are many people participating in this kind of activity in the states which allow it. Moreover, illegal sports wagering has been in existence for many years now and all the money generated from it are not being invested back in the community, but instead, are utilized by the illegal betting operators themselves.

Over the past years, many states have come to the realization that sports betting is an illegal activity which is proliferating without the proper regulation, which is why such has to be introduced. Millions of betting revenue disappear in the pockets of people who oversee illegal sports wagering operation, instead of being reinvested in the community.

The state of Ohio and its residents could soon see the change taking place with their own eyes since there was an eagerly anticipated bill introduced this week. This is going to be the first of several bills which would be proposed by the lawmakers of the state willing to make sports betting a reality, but at the same time being in no rush with the process.

Sports Wagering Expected to Enter State in 2019

It is known that neighboring states such as West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Michigan are already close to launching sports betting in its all-encompassing form. This could have been the driving incentive of this move and the new sports betting proposed bill, as local lawmakers would not be willing to see their residents enjoying gaming offerings pour their money in a neighboring state.

There is still the outstanding issue which involves the appropriate regulation. An adequate framework is required in order for the state to launch sports wagering in a legal manner. This first sports betting bill goes by the name of SB 316 and it is supported by Senator John Eklund, R-Munson Township.

He was appointed in November 2011 in order to replace Tim Grendell, who became a judge in Geauga County. According to his plan, the following weeks are going to witness several meetings aiming to gather together people showing interest towards such operation in the future.

Chances are that sports wagering is going to come to the state, as the mechanisms are already in motion, which means that lawmakers should be prepared with the regulation necessary by this autumn. According to the estimations, the potential legalization would have resulted in some $1 billion in the form of tax revenue over the span of a single year.

It should be taken into account that at the moment illegal sports betting might be able to generate some $3 billion which are not invested back into the community. For the time being, the introduced bill demonstrates only the intention of the lawmakers to work towards the said bills to be turned into law. The months of August and September would see the Ohio Legislature in session and they would target this window in order to propose a fully-rounded bill.

The currently existing racetracks and brick-and-mortar casino venues would be utilized for the purposes of sports betting since they already have the needed infrastructure and conditions for welcoming gambling on sports events.

What should be discussed in detail, however, is the tax on revenue which would be applied to operators in the future field, as this is an important feature that could make or break a gambling sector. At the moment there is a 33-percent tax set on other casino games, according to Ohio’s Constitution which could turn out crippling the potential field if sports betting does not witness a lower percentage.

 Author: Hannah Wallace

Hannah Wallace has been part of our team since the website was launched. She has a master’s degree in IT.