Although no sportsbooks have opened in Ohio, sports betting is legal in the state. In December 2021, both legislative chambers passed HB 29, a sports betting bill. Gov. Mike DeWine signed it into law on December 22. According to this law, sportsbooks must open onJanuary 1, 2023, at the latest.
Currently, the state’s Casino Control Commission has to draw up the regulations governing the emerging market. Casinos, racinos, and sports teamswill have priority for mobile sports betting licenses. Upon presenting proof that their operations will improve the state’s finances, each provider will be eligible for a second license. The legislation mandates converting lottery kiosks to make sports betting possible at restaurants, bars, and grocery stores.
Legal Betting was Close to Reality in 2020
Legal sports betting in the state was far from a chimera two years ago when representatives of the Senate and the House met to discuss the possibilities. Ultimately, efforts fell through as there wasn’t enough time to work, and the Senate asked for too many changes.
Here’s all the latest surrounding Ohio sports betting.
As mentioned, the first day of 2023 is the deadline for the state authority to launch sports betting. Under the new law, up to 25 Ohio online sportsbooks can open. As always, some sportsbooks are more likely to set up shop than others.
Sports Betting in Numbers
According to an estimate of the state’s Legislative Service Commission, the sports gambling market will be worth almost $3.5 billion after operating for a few years. This operation is potentially highly lucrative: tax revenue from the sector could reach $7 million in the first six months alone. The full2023 fiscal year can bring in $24 million.
The vast majority of the funds have been earmarked for education. Sports teams, casinos, local bars, and racinos that want to provide sports betting will be charged application fees. Part of these fees will go toward the support of veterans and their families. The total amount will exceed $10 million in the first months of the program.
For and Against
Both sides have their arguments when it comes to the use of revenue. Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley wants all the funds to go toward K-12 education. He also wants to task the Ohio Lottery Commission with oversight of the newlyemerging sector. Other politicians beg to differ,claiming that the Constitution is ‘silent’ to sports betting.
Types of Betting Licenses
The Ohio Casino Control Commission will be issuing three types of five-year licenses:Type A, Type B, and Type C. Type A licenses, which are for online and mobile app betting, will be issued to sports teams, casinos, racinos, and other operators in Ohio. Each one will cost up to $2.5 million.
These operators can contract with up to two ‘skins’ or mobile sports betting partners. The fee for the first one has been set at $3 million. The fee for the second is $10 million. This license is available only to operators that can provide evidence of economic benefit to Ohio.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission will issue 40 Type B licenses to brick-and-mortar gambling locations. On average, the initial fee will be $115,000. Up to three will be available to Summit and Montgomery. In addition, up to five locations are possible for Cuyahoga, Franklin, and Hamilton counties.
Finally, the Commission will issue 20 Type C licenses to businesses operating with an unlimited number of restaurants and bars with specific permits for liquor. They will be offering over/under bets and spreads on lottery sports gaming kiosks.
PGA, NASCAR, and eight professional sports teams are expected to apply for licenses.