North Carolina Hoping For Football Betting
Lawmakers in the state of North Carolina continue to try and get a bill passed to legalize online sports betting. There is some optimism that the passage of the bill is close, and it has some lawmakers already planning the steps it will take to get the industry launched.
There is already sports betting in North Carolina, but all of the current wagers must be placed at retail sportsbooks. The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians operates a pair of casinos and they have set up sportsbooks on-site.
Professional sports teams have helped back the current sports betting bill, and that has provided some added momentum. The current sports betting bill would allow at least 10 online sportsbooks to be available in North Carolina.
The North Carolina Senate actually approved this bill, SB 688, last year, but it has been stuck in the House of Representatives since that time. An official vote is expected soon, and is is believed that there is enough support to send the bill to Governor Roy Cooper’s desk.
Cooper has given his support to legal online sports betting in North Carolina, but this bill has plenty of opponents. Opponents of the bill are worried about the impact that sports betting will have for those with a gambling addiction.
Cooper was able to negotiate a new gaming compacts with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to give residents of the state a taste of legal sports betting.
NFL Season Coming Fast
Most states that have recently launched online sports betting have aimed to launch just prior to the start of the NFL season. That strategy had a huge benefit in Arizona, and North Carolina is hoping for a similar result.
The process to launch online sports betting is lengthy and time consuming, and it might not be possible to have this industry ready by September. A couple key lawmakers believe that a launch in October or November is more likely, and this would still benefit the state.
The Carolina Panthers are the in-state NFL team, and that team should help North Carolina drive the online sports betting industry. There is still plenty of work to be done before North Carolina even considers setting a target launch date.
Can North Carolina Compete with Tennessee?
When North Carolina finally launches online sports betting, it will set out to compete with neighboring Tennessee. The state of Tennessee has some interesting sports betting laws as all of that betting is done online.
The most recent sports betting report from Tennessee was from April and the total sports betting handle was $292.7 million. That was actually a decrease of more than 20% from the March handle, but a drop in April was to be expected.
The launch of online sports betting could have a negative impact on the Tennessee numbers, and there will be some crossover between the online sportsbooks that are available.