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Pop the champagne corks, Buckeye bettors, because in 2022, Ohio sports gamblers will be able to place legal wagers now that Governor Mike DeWine has signed off on HB 29, the sports betting bill that is now law as of Wednesday.
It took some last-minute changes by Ohio state Senators and House Reps to get HB 29 passed through the legislative body, which happened a few weeks back by overwhelming majorities in both chambers as we reported in Ohio Lawmakers Approve Sports Betting Bill, Gov. DeWine Up Next.
Now that Gov. DeWine has done his part with his pen, the sports betting operation in that state will be created step by step under the regulatory authority of the Ohio Casino Control Commission and the Ohio Lottery.
None of this would even be possible without the US Supreme Court having overturned PASPA back in June of 2018, a move that allowed individual states to decide whether they want to legalize, regulate, and tax the sports betting market that already exists illegally.
Now Ohio will join over half the states who have already legalized sports betting for their residents, but it won’ happen overnight.
According to the bipartisan bill that is now law, the Ohio sports betting market must set a start date no later than Jan. 1, 2023, which means gamblers there will most likely be able to make wagers there sometime in the next year.
First though, a few steps must take place, including the creation of the physical betting systems and venues as well as the regulatory concerns such as who exactly gets a license to run a sportsbook.
According to the legislation now in place, these licenses will govern:
The state Casino Control Commission will determine exactly which sports will be eligible for wagering but given Ohio’s vast athletic interests – pro sports like NFL, MLB, NBA, motorsports, Olympic sports, college football and basketball, plus golf and tennis – expect the betting choices to be broad.
After all, the more sports bets available, the bigger the potential handle, which means more taxable revenue for Ohio.
The 10% state tax that Ohio will charge sportsbooks is a more than fair rate, especially when you consider that other states have gone the more expensive route, like New York which will claim 51% of each operator’s gross gambling revenue.
Even with a lower tax rate, though, it’s big money for the state according to projections made by PlayOhio, who predicted that once the market matures after about three years:
“Ohio online and retail operators will generate between $9 billion and $12 billion in bets annually, which would produce between $700 million and $900 million in gross revenue each year.”
That money has been earmarked for Ohio K-12 schools, but it will most likely be spread around even more as the revenues grow, and soon those profits will benefit state residents instead of the bookies, offshore sportsbooks, and neighboring states that had been happy to take it before.
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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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