Supported by Adrienne Jones, House Bill 940 was heard in the House on Thursday of this week. The bill proposes to regulate and tax in-person and online sports betting in Maryland.
Maryland legislative debates on HB 940
Last year, voters in the state of Maryland voted in favor of a gambling expansion allowing sports betting at certain licensed facilities. In a vote last November 66.2% voters approved expansion of gambling in the state . The increased tax revenue is expected to be used primarily to fund public education.
Now, in the middle of the General Assembly session, the authorities Maryland state still debating sports betting expansion . So far, House Bill 940 which is sponsored by House Speaker Adrienne A. Jones , seems to have every chance of success. On the other hand, the Senate has not yet introduced a bill detailing the expansion of gambling in the state. Nor is there a timetable for when the Senate might introduce such a bill.
The bill was heard at a two-hour hearing this week on Thursday. After the debate, the next step is that the House set a deadline for voting on the proposal . But before that, both the House and the Appropriations Committee would have to discuss the proposal.
Taxes to fund state education
Sponsored by Jones HB 940 Proposes the establishment of personal sports betting at the state's six casinos. Additionally, personal betting would also be offered at two horse racing tracks. On the other hand, the bill proposes up to 10 online sports betting licenses . If the bill is approved, sports betting will be available on both mobile apps and websites.
In its current version, the bill proposes 15% tax on sports betting in the state . As mentioned, the revenue is expected to be used to fund education in the state. In addition, HB 940 estimates that taxes could raise approximately $16 million annually for education in the state.
Licences valid for 5 years
Under the current proposal, operators who would like to offer sports betting, would have to apply for a license . Furthermore, in an application fee applies for each operator to be filed with the Lottery and Gaming Control Commission. The application provides for an application fee of $250,000 for a Class A license and a fee of $50,000 for a Class B license. In addition, the proposal provides for a $500,000 fee for a mobile sports betting license .
HB 940 proposes that each license be valid for five years. In addition, upon license renewal, operators would pay a fee of 1% on their average gross sports betting revenues for the past five years, excluding taxes.
Regulated sports betting in the state of Maryland benefiting
In addition to the large market players smaller companies have also expressed interest in entering the Maryland regulated market . This will undoubtedly be one of the challenges that the state legislature will face. Lawmakers would have to find a way to regulate the market while ensuring sufficient competition. Also, given that many operators may be interested in launching their services, the number of licenses would have to be sufficient.
Earlier, the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Commission released a report that stated The illegal sports betting market in the state is estimated to be around $2.7 billion annually . However, once the sports betting market is regulated, the funds leaking into the black markets will undoubtedly decrease significantly.