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A year after Maryland voters approved sports betting in a statewide vote with 67% in favor, the Free State finally launched its sports gambling market late last week giving bettors the chance to place in-person wagers on the ongoing NFL season and more.
In a statement, Governor Larry Hogan said:
Today marks the culmination of years of effort to get sports betting up and running here in the State of Maryland. In addition to allowing Marylanders to bet on the NFL, March Madness and more, sports betting will also help to keep more dollars in-state and will provide another critical revenue source for public education without raising taxes on families and small businesses.
Governor Hogan has been a longtime advocate of bringing legal sports betting to Maryland, a take made possible once the Supreme Court overturned PASPA back in 2018 which gave each state the chance to decide if it wanted to allow sports gambling.
Inevitable delays in the process have caused Maryland’s market to launch well after its neighbors were able to make it happen, but MD gamblers will no longer have to travel to Delaware, New Jersey, West Virginia, and Virginia to place wagers, now they can do it at home.
Last Thursday the first Maryland sports wager was placed by a state leader who has pushed for this market from the get-go.
At a launch event held last Thursday at the MGM National Harbor, Gov. Hogan did the honors by breaking open his betting kitty and placing the very first wager in the state, and it was no surprise to anyone which teams he put his money on.
Gov. Hogan bet enough on an all-Maryland Super Bowl featuring a matchup between the Washington Football Team and the Baltimore Ravens that his winning payout would be an impressive $20,000, a sign that he either bet big or the odds are against him.
Regarding the bet, Hogan said:
This is a long shot but could be a big win. It’s Washington (Football Team) to win the NFC and the Baltimore Ravens to win the AFC. An all Maryland Super Bowl out in L.A.
What’s not a longshot is Maryland’s sports gambling market paying off.
This new market will potentially generate millions of dollars in tax revenue that will be reinvested in improving the lives of Maryland residents, money that until recently was leaving the state through offshore sportsbooks, and those neighbors who already legalized those activities.
Maryland charges a 15% state tax on sports betting revenue, and once the market is up and running at full throttle, that is projected to total around $100 million annually, with $15 million of that earmarked for the state and $85 million for the businesses there.
For now, Maryland bettors must gamble in-person, but once the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission clears a few more hurdles it plans to launch the online sports betting market, as well, and that should increase profits substantially.
Maryland joins over half the states in the US that have legalized, regulated, and now tax sports betting, and all that money that was going to be spent elsewhere will now be redirected back to home.
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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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