Two new online sports betting bills filed in New York

Two new proposals for online and mobile sports betting have been filed in the state of New York.

Lawmakers in the state of New York have put forward two proposals for online sports betting after Governor Andrew Cuomo signalled he would support efforts to legalise online betting in the Empire State last week.

Two new sports betting bills

Both Senator Joseph Addabbo and Assemblymember Gary Pretlow have put forward proposals to regulate mobile sports wagering in New York.

Addabbo’s bill, SB1183 and Pretlow’s A1257, were filed last week on 7 January and would amend New York’s Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Breeding Law, paving the way for the state’s commercial and tribal casinos to offer online betting.

Addabbo’s bill is currently with the Senate Racing, Gaming And Wagering Committee, while Pretlow’s bill is with the Assembly Racing and Wagering Committee. 

Most of the details in the bills share similarities with the 2019-20 versions of the proposed bills.

According to both bills, a one-time $12m licence fee will be required for anyone that plans to operate a mobile sportsbook in the state.

Mobile sports betting revenue will be subject to a 12% tax rate while the state will hold onto 5% of that tax revenue to be put towards combating problem gambling. This proposed tax rate is higher than the existing 8.5% tax rate set for in-person betting.

Operators will be required to use official league data for all in-play wagers and the bill calls for operators to pay a royalty fee of 0.2% of sports betting handle to the sports leagues.

Professional sports venues in the state and off-track betting facilities will be allowed to partner with a casino to have on-site betting kiosks.

Both bills also call for licensees in the state to be granted two skins for mobile betting. Based on the state’s four commercial casinos and three tribal venues, if these bills are successful there could be up to 14 mobile betting brands in the state of New York.

Cuomo reverses opinion on mobile betting

Last week, Cuomo reversed his stance on mobile sports betting and he is expected to make online betting a central part of his policy outlook when he makes his State of the State address today

As the state of New York is in dire financial straits as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the legalisation of online sports betting could help generate new tax revenue for the Empire State.

In a statement, Cuomo said: “At a time when New York faces a historic budget deficit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the current online sports wagering structure incentivizes a large segment of New York residents to travel out of state to make online sports wagers or continue to patronize black markets.

“New York has the potential to be the largest sports wagering market in the United States, and by legalizing online sports betting we aim to keep millions of dollars in tax revenue here at home, which will only strengthen our ability to rebuild from the COVID-19 crisis.”

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