20th state to pass sports betting
Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the Lawful Sports Betting Act into law Friday, making Michigan the 20th state to pass sports betting. Michigan has also become the ninth state to permit legal sports betting this year.
This means that Michigan is now the second-largest state across the Midwest to approve legalized sports betting, only behind Illinois.
The plan is to have sportsbooks opened in time for the start of March Madness, a popular college basketball tournament. This is always a lucrative betting event on the calendar of sportsbooks.
changes to tax rates was enough to convince her that approving legalized sports betting was a good move
Whitmer did have concerns that legal sports betting could negatively impact the state’s lottery revenues. This in turn would affect education funding if true. However, changes to tax rates was enough to convince her that approving legalized sports betting was a good move.
Expected to generate $19m in taxes
Facilities that already have a casino license, or Native American tribes that have gambling facilities, can obtain a sports betting license.
The required criteria still has to be confirmed for those applying for a sports betting license. These facilities will pay 8.4% of gross revenue to the state.
Initially, sports betting will be in retail locations only. Once policies have been put in place for online sports betting, license holders can then launch online sportsbooks.
The Michigan Department of Treasury is hoping that legalized sports betting will generate about $19m in tax revenue each year.
These tax dollars will mainly be put toward education via the School Aid Fund in Michigan. There will also be money going towards the First Responder Presumed Coverage Fund. This is a fund that gives benefits to first responders that have developed serious cancer.
Allocation of funds
Governor Whitmer mentioned the allocation of these funds after the signing of the legislation. She said that legal sports betting will
put more dollars in Michigan classrooms and increase funding for firefighters battling cancer.”
Representative Brandt Iden originally brought betting legalization bills into the legislature. One of his bills almost passed in December 2018, but the outgoing Governor Rick Snyder vetoed it.
He is happy that the state is now part of the modern era of gaming. He spoke about how residents of Michigan will no longer have to go to other states to place sports bets or use risky black-market alternatives.
New regulations will also be created for fantasy sports events as part of these bills.
Key stakeholders in Michigan believe that legal sports betting will bring a lot of economic development with it. It gives gambling facilities the opportunity to offer something new and fresh to their clientele, as well as attract new customers.
Once the casino obtains a sports betting license, it will have eight windows for betting, as well as self-service kiosks.