Ohio Governor Signs House Bill 29 into Law
Sports betting is now legal in Ohio as they become the 33rd state to approve legalized gambling since the US Supreme Court struck down the federal ban on sports wagering in 2018.
The bill was approved by both chambers of the state government on December 8. It was finally signed into law on Wednesday. The Ohio Casino Control Commission will regulate the activity, which will launch no later than January 1, 2023.
The new law permits people to place wagers at casinos and kiosks within bars, restaurants, and professional sports facilities. Online wagering will also be allowed within the state.
It will take several months for the OCCC to get all the rules and regulations in place before the state can start accepting license applications from providers.
Those operators will be assessed a 10 percent tax on their net revenue, which will go towards K-12 education and problem gambling programs.
Gamblers Will Have Many Options
Not only will Ohioans be able to place bets using mobile devices, but they’ll be able to wager at any available casino sportsbook or at kiosks that will be open at businesses throughout the state such as restaurants, bars, or bowling alleys.
Casino and racino sportsbooks will have to pay from $50,000 to $100,000 to obtain a license, and other physical locations like bars and restaurants will pay $1,000.
Primary operators will also be able to apply to have up to two skins. The first will be assessed a $3-million fee, which is good for three years. The second skin will cost $10 million and will only be awarded under certain conditions.
According to the Ohio Casino Control Commission, regulations and rules for this new industry could take several months. It expects the commission to accept applications from businesses that want to offer sports betting in the fall or summer of 2022.
While January 2023 is the cut-off for the launch of sports betting, supporters hope sportsbooks will begin to arrive sooner.
State Looking Forward to More Gambling Revenue
Ohio already has legalized gaming in the state, which is becoming more popular since the opening of four casinos. Casino and racino gaming increased and are expected to bring a new record for revenue this year.
Ohio’s four casinos have already topped almost $900 million through the end of November, and Racino revenue is already above the $788 million figure this year.
The state will finally be able to take advantage of this increased revenue that four states along their border have already enjoyed since they started legalizing sports betting back in 2017. Kentucky is now the only state bordering Ohio that doesn’t have legalized gaming.
With the approval of sports betting in Ohio, the Legislative Budget Office estimates that the sports betting industry will bring in more than $3.35 billion for the state after a few years of operating.
It is also expected to create thousands of jobs, with many operators already looking for people to employ, from customer service to executive positions.