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Massachussets Sports Betting Getting Closer After Governor Introduced Bill

Massachusetts Sports Betting Getting Closer After Governor Introduced Bill

On January 29th, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker made breaking news in the U.S. sports gambling industry. He proposed a bill, known as HD 678, hoping to legalize sports betting throughout the entire state successfully.

As the common sports fan knows, Massachusetts is the home to four of the most successful franchises to be a part of major league sports:

  • New England Patriots
  • Boston Red Sox
  • Boston Bruins
  • Boston Celtics

The Logistics of HD 678

Governor Baker displayed the fact that the proposed bill would permit licensed casinos and online sports betting sites to provide mobile bets to be placed within the state. The proposal eliminates any possibility of placing bets on collegiate sports and Esports, a massive revenue stream for all casinos and sports betting sites.

HD 678 grants the Massachusetts Gaming Commission outright control over the entire Massachusetts sports gambling business. This gives them the right to enhance applications and impose the government’s requirements.

Casinos that are already well established in the state will have the option of registering for retail sports betting license and the opportunity to place sports bets online. Taxes play a significant role as an on-site wager would be taxed at a high of 10%, while online wagers will be taxed slightly, rising to 12.5%.

Registration for a retail sports betting license would cost a total of $100,000, while the licensing fee costs $500,000 once approved. Seems expensive? Reasonably so, as in today’s world, a company must spend money in order to make money.

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Forbidding Wagers on College Sports

Prohibiting Massachusetts residents from placing wagers on collegiate events is undoubtedly the largest limitation placed within the proposed bill. This puts Massachusetts in a position to fall way behind in the sports gambling industry to its fellow New England state competitors.

New Jersey forbids people to place wagers on in-state colleges, even when they have an away game and are playing as far away as possible. Relatively close, Pennsylvania enables all gamblers to place bets on all and any college matchup, making it a hotspot for bettors eager to place college bets.
What This Means for Massachusetts

This isn’t the first time Governor Baker has included sports gambling in his yearly budget program. Surprisingly, this is his third attempt at bringing an entirely new revenue stream into Massachusetts, and it finally feels that the saying, “The third time’s the charm,” will live up to its expectations.

In 2020, a similar bill was confirmed by the House but ultimately rejected by the Senate. Because of the current state of the world we live in today, with the spread of a deadly virus having such a strong negative impact on the economy, it is crucial to have as many possible revenue streams as possible.

Currently, there are a total of 20 states that have legalized sports betting. Smaller states, Rhode Island and New Hampshire, bordering Massachusetts, have gone through their own legalizing sports betting process. Connecticut appears to be nearing the hope of passing its own bill of legalizing sports gambling within the state in 2021.

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