State of the Union: A look back at the week that was in North America

NJ senator proposes online gaming tax hike

New Jersey Senator John McKeon has filed a bill that would increase the tax on online casino and digital sports betting platforms to 30%. Online casinos currently pay a 15% state tax, while sports betting platforms pay 13% of gross gaming revenue. The bill is one line, and does not include an effective date or argument for the proposed change.

New Jersey law requires that online casinos and sportsbooks be tethered to brick-and-mortar locations, including casinos and horse racetracks. There are currently 30 online casinos and 18 digital sportsbooks.

In general, sportsbook operators are most comfortable with a tax rate of 10% or less. A 30% tax on sports betting would move New Jersey from one of the most favorable places to do business to one of the least.

Of the nearly 40 US jurisdictions that offer legal online sports betting, nine have a tax rate of about 15%, and of those nine, three are states where the lottery is the regulator. Ohio Governor Mike DeWine last summer spearheaded a doubling of the tax rate on wagering there, raising it from 10% to 20%.

Wagering platforms off to hot start in North Carolina

North Carolinians welcomed betting and the NCAA men’s basketball tournament by wagering $198.1m in the first full week of digital sports betting, which coincided with the start of March Madness.

During that first week, sportsbook betting platforms had gross wagering revenue of $42.7m, and paid the state $7.7m in tax revenue, the North Carolina Lottery’s sport betting department shared at a meeting 26 March.

“I think people liked the ability to wager in North Carolina on sports,” deputy executive director for compliance and sports betting Sterl Carpenter understated.

Duke, North Carolina and NC State all made the field of 64 and advanced to the Sweet 16, but 1-seed North Carolina was denied a trip to the Elite 8 with a 89-87 loss to 4-seed Alabama. NC State, an 11-seed, is the highest seed still alive in the tournament. GeoComply previously reported 5.4 million location checks in the first 48 hours of live betting.

MGC weighs limits for sports betting platforms

After a Wall Street Journal story exploring credit and VIP customers in sports betting ran 27 March, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission 28 March began a discussion about placing limits on bets that can be placed at sportsbooks and how operators target VIPs and those who are at risk.

Commissioner Eileen O’Brien also said that she would like to see the answers that any sports betting platforms in Massachusetts provided to US Senator Richard Blumenthal, who requested information from operators. Blumenthal is also sponsoring the GRIT Act, which would redirect 50 percent of the federal excise tax on sportsbooks and send it to problem and responsible gambling programs.

Also in Massachusetts this week, a public-private consortium announced that it will begin to explore ways to raise awareness about how wagering can harm young people and the risks associated with gambling, according to the Boston Herald.

The ultimate goal, according to a press release from Attorney General Andrea Campbell’s office, is to create an “evidence-based education, training, and health curriculum targeted at middle school, high school, and college-aged young people.”

Athletes sound off on sports betting

Jayson Tatum keeping it light on the court and in the parlays! Don’t worry, he’s got your back!#jaysontatum #BostonCeltics #celtics #sportsbetting #BETTING #NBA #nbanews #nbabasketball

— EssentiallySports (@es_sportsnews) March 28, 2024

North Carolina center Armando Bacot was asked about sports betting at the Tar Heels’ NCAA presser in Los Angeles Wednesday, ahead of Thursday’s March Madness Sweet 16 game

— Langston Wertz Jr. (@langstonwertzjr) March 28, 2024

Two new appointees coming to NICG

US Department of the Interior Secretary Deb Haaland announced 25 March the proposed appointments of Sharon Avery and Jeannie Hovland as associate commissioners for the National Indian Gaming Commission, which supports tribal economic development and self-sustainability in Indian Country.

Avery, a member of Michigan’s Saginaw Chippewa Tribe, is currently associate general counsel for the NIGC, and Hovland, a member of South Dakota’s Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, is vice chair of the NIGC. The appointments are open for a 30-day public comment period, after which they will become final.

The NIGC in February lost its chairman, Sequoyah Simermeyer, when he abruptly resigned and less than a week later was introduced as a vice president for strategic partnerships at FanDuel.

NCAA on proposal to ban college-athlete prop bets

Good to see exMassGov @CharlieBakerMA @NCAA now recognized the inherent harm of College Sports-Betting to athletes & the public! @MassGamingComm@massteacher @BTU66 @NUSL @MassCasinoWatch

— Wynn-Encore Boston Casino Oversight (not WynnLV) (@revokewynn) March 28, 2024


Georgia lawmakers fail to legalise sports betting as session closes

Unwinding the sports betting disaster in DC and what comes next

FanDuel the driver of Flutter’s ‘tremendous’ North American success

IGA executive director: Tribes will drive California wagering

Ohtani: ‘I never bet’ or ‘willfully’ wired money to bookie

Downstate NY casino license decision not expected until 2025

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