Efforts to Legalize Sports Betting in Maryland is Experiencing Even Further Delay
Residents in Maryland still have to wait to get involved in the sports betting industry as the state’s Sports Wagering Applicant Review Commission has delayed the process for five different casinos across the state. The governor urged the commission to proceed quickly but the effort was unsuccessful.
Five Casinos Are Still Waiting to Get Approval For In-person Gambling
The casinos that were involved have cleared the first wave level of legal and technical review by state lottery officials and have applications pending as they will be reviewed by the Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Commission. The five casinos that are awaiting licenses are Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore, Live! Casino & Hotel in Hanover, Hollywood Casino in Perryville, MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, and Ocean Downs Casino in Berlin.
Members who were involved with the commission met for more than two hours which included lawyers from Maryland Attorney General’s office to consider the applications. However, the verdict voted in an open session to accumulate more data to gather more information from the casinos. They asked each gambling facility to submit supplemental ownership information.
The members in the commission plan to meet at a later date which will most likely be set for November 18th for the possibility of handing the licenses to the five casinos to start sports betting in the state. Gov. Larry Hogan wants the process to be expedited but also accused legislation of stalling the license approvals. Voters in Maryland are in favor of allowing sports betting to take place across the state as in 2020 residents approved a ballot question by 2/1.
Gov. Larry Hogan is Frustrated in Regards to the Delay that is Taking Place in the State
Governor Larry Hogan has expressed his frustration as sports gambling is experiencing further delays. If it becomes legal within the state’s borders, up to 22 locations will be able to take place by being able to accept wagers via in-person in gambling facilities.
Hogan stated, “On sports betting, it’s a very frustrating situation. Obviously the voters overwhelmingly voted for sports betting…They passed a law which they now seem to be ignoring.”
There is no denying the benefits that sports betting will bring to the state as other states have been able to witness record handles in both September and October. Accepting wagers could provide Maryland approximately $20 million in state tax revenue a year. Democratic state Sen. Cory McCray reiterated that the study of gathering the relevant information needed so that all businesses will be a part of a level playing field.
Members of the state legislature are worried that big businesses will hold a big portion of the market. They want to give local and minority business owners a shot at getting involved in the sports betting market. Mobile sports betting may take longer to come to fruition in the state.
Maryland’s neighbors like Washington DC, Delaware, and Virginia have benefited from residents who are driving over from Maryland to place wagers on numerous sports. Even if the commission signs off on the licenses, mobile sport betting platforms will most likely have to wait 45 days to accept bets. 2022 will be an important year as voters overwhelmingly want sports betting to be approved in their state.