Since 2018, 30 states and the District of Columbia offer various forms of legal sports betting, and now the state of Massachusetts has joined on the wagering train just in time for New England Patriots fans to bet on their team in September. While legalizing sports betting can be a dangerous game and lead to a massive loss of income for die-hard sports fans, Massachusetts Senators and Representatives came to the conclusion that passing a bill set to “legalize betting on professional and college sports” will overall benefit the economy of the Old Bay State. Senator Eric Lesser shared that approximately $65 million will now be earned annually through this industry, which is major revenue in the medium-sized state of about 7 million residents.
By legalizing sports betting, all tax revenue is now returned to the states, rather than stored in offshore operations that are not advantageous to the state of Massachusetts whatsoever. The final decision now lies in the hands of Governor Charlie Baker, who has 10 days to come to a conclusion about whether he wants to make the bill into law or not. The one exception to this law is betting on regular season collegiate sports, with Massachusetts D1 programs asking to be exempted from sports betting in order to protect student athletes; the compromise made regarding college sports betting concluded that while standard games are off the table, wagering is allowed for postseason games and special tournaments, where the stakes are higher.
While this industry is expected to be lucrative, it seems that participating casinos must spend money to make money, with CBS Boston sharing that “there will be a $5 million application fee for casinos, slot parlors and race tracks to obtain a sports betting license.” However, if you want to bet on your favorite teams from the convenience of your own home, Massachusetts is planning on implementing seven mobile betting platforms as well, so fans can place bets on their phones and laptops.