Monthly Report from Illinois Gaming Board Indicates Record October Due to NFL
Illinois Sports Books Generated Oct. Revenue of $102M, with $15M in Tax Revenue
First Legal Sports Wager in Illinois in March 2020, Online Apps Authorized June 2020
The NFL is king in the U.S. as sports gamblers have flocked to place every manner of wager on the league’s games, players, and futures, and according to a monthly report from the Illinois Gaming Board, that’s led to a record October handle in that state, good news all around.
Here’s how those Illinois numbers break down according to Focus Gaming News:
· Illinois Sportsbooks generated a $1.03 billion handle in October
· That’s up 24% from the prior month ($831.8 million)
· Online sports betting accounts for 96% of the total handle
This means that Illinois has become the fifth U.S. state to exceed $1 billion in a monthly handle, following Nevada, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania, a sign that most gamblers there prefer making their bets from the comfort of their own couches than anywhere else in the state.
And that has meant big money for Illinois in terms of tax revenue.
So what does a $1 billion+ handle mean for the state of Illinois in terms of tax revenue?
According to that Gaming Board report, that handle generated $102 million in sportsbook revenue, which in turn created $15 million in tax revenue for the state, money that can be reinvested to fund the pet projects that lawmakers there see as a priority.
So far, the Illinois legal sports betting market has generated a total $16.6 billion handle which has resulted in $1.3 billion in total sportsbook revenue which has become $203 million in tax revenue, money that prior to legalization was not taxed or accounted for in the books.
Since May 2018, the U.S. has allowed individual states to legalize, regulate, and tax their own sports betting market and over 30 states including Illinois have done so, using that new revenue stream to fund public programs and services including education and economic development.
Illinois was one of the earlier states to join in.
For years, Illinois sports betters had been forced to place their wagers using illegal bookies or unregulated offshore sportsbooks, not the best solution given that those bets and winnings were not guaranteed so they were ripe for fraud with little or no repercussions available.
In Illinois, lawmakers finally saw the light in June 2019 and passed a legal sports betting bill as part of a larger capital bill, which was eventually signed by Governor J.B. Pritzker later that same month, and then it took nine more months until that market celebrated its launch.
That first-ever Illinois sports bet was placed on March 9, 2020, at the Rivers Casino, and then three months later in June the online apps were authorized and the full market there was up and running, an operation that has seemed to grow in size ever since.
Now Illinois is considered to be one of the larger sports betting markets in the U.S., an evolution that will most likely continue as more resident bettors join in on the action, with pro sporting events happening all year round and fans there absolutely loving the newfound thrills.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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