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Right now, if a North Carolinian bettor wanted to place a wager on any sporting event, they would have to travel to one of two Cherokee casinos located in the western part of the state, an inconvenient trek for most that could be eliminated with the House’s passage of Senate Bill 688.
That sports betting bill – SB 688 – would allow a mobile sportsbook market to be created in the Tar Heel State, a move that would give residents easier access to legal and regulated gambling, an activity that should not require a trek across the state to make happen.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper agrees, telling a News and Observer reporter that sports betting is “here whether we like it or not,” so proponents feel it is best to legalize, regulate, and tax that activity so that those existing revenues can benefit state residents.
Creating a NC mobile market to accompany the existing in-person sports betting operation run by the two Cherokee casinos makes sense to many lawmakers like Gov. Cooper, who feel that not only would a mobile market bring in more money, but it would also create more jobs, saying:
The issue is will North Carolina try to be on the cutting edge for the technology jobs and other employment that it will create and plus be able to get state taxpayers their cut or are we just going to let it happen all around us? I think it’s time for us to step up and do it.
The good news is that SB 688, the mobile sports betting bill, is already in play.
North Carolina lawmakers are already working on bringing mobile sports betting to their state, the state Senate passing a piece of legislation last year that would allow for the creation of such a market, and now it is up to the House of Reps to give SB 688 the green light, as well.
Once that happens, it will be up to the more-than-willing Governor Cooper to sign it into law and then residents would soon enjoy the mobile sports betting market and the state would begin benefitting from the 8% tax that sportsbooks would pay the state on gaming revenue.
It makes sense to go in this mobile direction since other states have proven online sports betting to be more lucrative than the retail version, with the majority of their profits coming from online sportsbooks since gamblers understandably enjoy betting from the comfort of their own couches.
Seeing as two of North Carolina’s closest neighbors – Virginia and Tennessee – have already created their own mobile sports betting market, Old North State leaders must face the reality that resident gamblers want to bet online and will spend that money elsewhere if forced to do so.
The number of states in the U.S. that have created their own legal sports betting market has grown to over 30, with others in the process of setting up their markets so they can launch sometime in 2022.
Backers of SB 688 feel they have enough House votes to pass that bill in the current session, so keep checking back for all the latest news and updates on this story.
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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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