Last Updated on May 8, 2020
Nearly two dozen states have legal sports betting, with a handful already having active in-person and online sports betting options.
New states are coming soon in 2020 and beyond, as we expect the total number of states with legal sports betting in the U.S. to be above 30.
Let’s take a look at some states that could be next, with the latest updates.
Without a doubt, California is the most attractive state for sports betting operators and casinos. With the most people in the union including a very high number of sports fans and bettors, California can be considered to be the most important state yet to be legalized. Will it be legalized soon? We will see.
California is also very strict with laws that protect residents in the state, so it will be one to follow in 2020.
The latest from California is a hearing held in Sacramento in the second week of 2020.
Experts in the legal sports betting industry have said that the hearing “went well” for a California legal hearing, but there may not need to be a full bill passed in order for California to offer sports betting.
In November of 2019, California tribal casinos proposed an amendment that would allow the casinos to offer sports betting at tribal casinos and racetracks.
Whether this happens or not is a debate for another day, but the point is there are two avenues in California for sports betting. One is a full bill, and the second is this proposed amendment by the California tribes.
After California, Florida is a very important state to the landscape of legal sports betting given the number of people in the state.
Sports betting is on the docket for 2020, after a bill was introduced SB 968 in late 2019.
Florida is a state that has a tedious structure in terms of legislature, so this is not something that will happen overnight.
One problem is strictly based on how a previous referendum was passed that allows voters in the state to have the power to expand gambling in the state of Florida.
Does that include sports betting? Welcome to Florida, where that will be the debate in 2020. If not, it will need to be passed by the state government.
Like many other states in 2020, Georgia has left the decision for sports betting up to voters in the state.
If the legislation passes in 2020, voters in the state of Georgia can choose whether or not to legalize sports betting in addition to other gambling offerings.
In Maryland, sports betting is quite simple for “The Next Step”.
The state has a proposed SB58, which is set to authorize sports betting at Maryland casinos and racetracks.
The only thing Maryland residents have to do is vote to approve it before November 2020.
In the state of New York, you already can bet on sports…but it has to be at a retail sportsbook. As we all know, New York is a vast state and the prime vehicle for sports betting needs to be mobile. Especially with just how many people are located in New York City.
Politicians have lobbied for retail sports betting in the state, and New York will try again in 2020 with a likelihood of passing a bill for legal sports betting.
Ohio has been close twice, but no dice so far (literally).
In 2020, the debate will not be whether or not to legalize sports betting in the state…that seems like a foregone conclusion.
The debate is who is the overseer of the regulations between the state lottery as other states such as Oregon and Delaware, or another regulatory body.
South Dakota‘s efforts towards legal sports betting in the state is led by Mike Rodman of the Deadwood Gaming Association.
In 2019, a bill got through the state Senate but did not make it out of the House. South Dakota will try again in 2020 and we have seen it is usually more successful the second (or third) time around given the landscape of the rest of the nation.
Vermont is looking to legislate sports betting in the state in 2020, as it has a bill proposed to legalize mobile sports betting in the state.
Vermont has one of the most lenient proposals (S213) compared to neighboring states, as it includes an age of 18 years or order to bet, college sports and esports allowed, and just a 10% tax rate with low operator’s licensing fees.
Interestingly enough, it also leaves the door open for interstate sports betting, which is quite a reach but an interesting one nevertheless.
Virginia is behind the times when it comes to legal sports betting, but good news is on the horizon for those in the state that wish to gamble and bet on sports.
In 2020, the state’s legislature has a choice of five bills that will expand gaming to the state.
The most important one is SB1126, which would bring casinos along with sports betting and online gambling to the state.
Expect Virginia to legalize in 2020, or at least take the next step forward.
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