As this year's legislative session nears its conclusion, there isn't much time left to pass a bill that would legalize mobile sports betting in North Carolina. But even as lawmakers finish their work for the year, a third physical sportsbook will shortly launch inside a North Carolina tribal casino. Also, it seems like we won’t be seeing legal college sports gambling just yet, keep on reading to learn more.
WRAL-TV reports that the new sportsbook will be inside Two Kings Casino. The Catawba Nation owns the casino, which is located near Kings Mountain, which is just west of Charlotte on Interstate 85.
The sportsbook initiative is consulted by Delaware North, a casino operator with headquarters in Buffalo, New York. Delaware North runs gaming establishments in New York, Ohio, and Arkansas. The Betly Sportsbook app is operational in Tennessee, West Virginia, and Arkansas.
The only places where it is now permitted to gamble on sports in North Carolina are the sportsbooks within the two Cherokee casinos in the state's western region. By the start of the football season, the sportsbook at Two Kings Casino should be operational.
Senate Bill 38, which would have legalized mobile sports betting, was adopted by the House of Representatives last week in Raleigh on a 51–50 vote, while Senate Bill 688 was shut down on a 52–49 vote.
Some House members stated that gambling can cause poverty, suicide, and criminality during the discussion on mobile gaming. SB38 was taken off the House calendar and sent to the Rules, Calendar, and Operations Committee due to arguments from supporters who claim that North Carolinians already travel to neighboring Tennessee and Virginia, where mobile gambling is legal, to place bets on sports and that this is costing the state of North Carolina tax revenue. There has not yet been a scheduled committee hearing.
A clause that would have permitted gambling on college sports was removed from the bill before it was brought to the committee. In-state and out-of-state horse races and professional sports would both still be available for wagering. This is unfortunate, as this would have been a great source of revenue, just look at Michigan, where gambling revenues were up 53.5% in April, in part thanks to the fact that it’s legal to bet on NCAA football in the Great Lakes State.
It would require agreement from both the House and the Senate if it were to be passed out of committee and sent back to the full House before being presented to Democratic Governor Roy Cooper for his consideration. The governor has said he will back the proposal.