Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment Inc., the owner and operator of the Parx Casino of Bensalem, Pennsylvania, has applied for a sports betting license with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
Multiple sports betting operations
The company seeks approval to offer sports betting at the Parx Casino and in the South Philadelphia Turf Club. The club is an off-track racing venue in a prime location for sports betting. The Citizen’s Bank Field, home of the Phillies, is next door. The Turf Club is also located near the Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Eagles, and the Wells Fargo Center, where the 76ers and Flyers play.
Offering sports betting so close to the professional team venues should help the Turf Club do quite well with this new offering. Fans of the teams will not have to travel far to place a wager in person.
It was no surprise to see the application submitted by the Parx because the casino announced in July that it had signed a partnership deal with London-based GAN for the operation of an on-site sportsbook along with an online offering.
A separate application was filled out for the Turf Club because it is being considered a non-primary location. The fee to operate sports betting at this location would be covered by the $10m licensing fee paid by Greenwood for the Parx operations.
The Gaming Control Board must approve the application for the Parx to offer sports betting before it can begin. The Horse Racing Commission must approve the Turf Club application because it has oversight of the off-track betting venue.
A spokesman for the Gaming Board, Douglas Harbach, said that the casino license would not be delayed due to the additional need for a regulatory review of the Turf Club.
Approval will take time
Parx Casino was not the first operator in Pennsylvania to apply for a sports betting license. The week before, Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course submitted its application with the Gaming Control Board.
Both the Parx and Hollywood Casinos will have to wait a little while before they know if they are approved for licensing. Reportedly, the applications will not be approved before October. The board is expected to meet on October 3, which should be when the applications are considered.
Unfortunately for the operators, that means that they will not be able to offer sports betting when the NFL season kicks off on September 6 in Philadelphia. The sportsbooks will have to wait until later in the fall.
An operator that offers sports betting in Pennsylvania must apply for approval and pay a licensing fee of $10m (€8.5m). The tax rate is 36%. The licensing fee must be paid 60 days after approval, and the operator is not allowed to accept wagers until the fee has been paid. According to VSO News, new regulations were approved by the Gaming Control Board earlier this month, allowing operators in the state to begin filing applications for consideration.
So far, Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey and Mississippi offer sports betting. West Virginia is expected to begin providing services in the coming days, so Pennsylvania will be the sixth state in the nation where sports betting is legalized and fully operational.