South Dakota Sports Betting Staying Offline
Legislators in South Dakota have decided that a move to online sports betting is not necessary or needed at this time. The South Dakota State Senate was hoping to get a bill passed that would expand the current betting options outside the city of Deadwood.
After lawmakers in the Senate approved Senate Joint Resolution 502, that measure was shut down rather convincingly in the House. This bill would have created a new constitutional amendment to remove the current ban on online gambling.
Proponents of legal sports betting pointed to the amount of revenue that could be brought in if mobile betting was legal. This has become the most popular way to bet on sports in the United States as betting on retail sportsbooks remains limited.
Residents of this state are looking for ways to bet on sports through online sportsbooks, at least according to a report from GeoComply. That company tracks unique action from mobile bettors in the US, and there was a large percentage of blocked transactions in Iowa that pinpointed the location to South Dakota.
Plenty of Strong Opposition
While there were plenty of lawmakers and other officials that supported online sports betting, there appeared to be even more opposition. Governor Kristi Noem is opposed to online sports gambling, and she could ultimately veto any bill that lands on her desk.
Leaders of the Department of Revenue were also outspoken against online sports gambling, and the arguments got very intense. David Wiest, Deputy Secretary, acknowledged that he believed online gambling was a sin comparable to murder.
The Deadwood Gaming Association was not at the most recent meeting, and it didn’t get a chance to speak up against this resolution. Online sports gambling would hurt the brick-and-mortar casinos that are in the town, and gambling has saved Deadwood.
It’s unclear when South Dakota lawmakers will make another attempt to get a bill passed, but they will have plenty of work to do. Citizens of South Dakota are attempting to get a measure on the ballots in November, and that might be the only way that this gets done.
Wyoming Winning the Battle in Sports Betting
The part of the country where South Dakota is located is not a massive betting market, but another state has made a similar push. The state of Wyoming is the least populated state in the United States, but it has actually produced better numbers than South Dakota.
Wyoming posted a total sports betting handle of more than $40 million in the first four months that this was a legal option. South Dakota had just $2.7 million in bets, but there was one major difference.
South Dakota only allows retail sports gambling, and all of the betting action in Wyoming is done online. If South Dakota were to offer online sports betting, then it could eventually produce similar numbers as Wyoming.