A sports betting bill is back on the desk of Governor Janet Mills in Maine, and lawmakers are hoping for a better result. Mills vetoed a potential sports betting bill back in 2019, and the state has been working to craft a better bill since that time. maine Sports Betting is under way.
The governor will have 10 days to make a decision on the bill, but she could use a similar tactic as she did in 2019. She could simply decide to not act on the bill, and it would ultimately die as there wouldn’t be a chance to override the decision.
Another issue that could hurt the chances of sports betting is that lawmakers also passed another bill to allow Native American tribes to offer casino gambling on their lands. This was a surprising move and a bill that is not expected to be approved by Mills.
Lawmakers do believe that this current bill is a better option than the 2019 version, but the final decision will still rest with Governor Mills.
Plenty of Maine Sports Betting Competition
Maine is not expected to become a large sports betting market even if this bill becomes a law, and there is plenty of competition in that part of the country. The New England portion of the US has seen plenty of growth in sports betting, and that should continue later in 2021.
The state does have several different gaming options currently, including casinos, racetracks, and OTB sites. The Native American tribes also support this bill, but that was not the case back in 2019.
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Luchini Blasts New Amendments
Senator Louis Luchini was the main sponsor of LD 1352, and he made a surprising move as the Senate was getting ready to approve the bill. Luchini urged other members of the Senate to vote against the bill as he was not happy with some of the amendments that were added late in the process.
The biggest complaint that Luchini had was the language that was added that requires the licenses to be “tethered.” This means that online-only operators would not be able to apply for a license unless they first partnered with a casino.
The Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee was responsible for a number of amendments, but those were added in an effort to gain the support and vote of Mills.
Both Betting Forms Available
Lawmakers in Maine realized that simply legalizing retail betting would not allow the state to reach its full potential, and online sports betting was also included in the bill. Even though Maine is not a state with a big background in sports, it should still attract some of the top operators in the industry.
This bill sets the tax rate at 10% for retail sportsbooks, and online sports betting revenue is taxed at a rate of 15%. The cost for a sports betting license in Maine is $100,000, but that license must be renewed every two years.
The application process for a sports betting license will not be available until after the bill officially becomes a law, assuming it happens this time around.