Approval Looks Likely for North Carolina Online Sports Betting Bill

  • North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper believes that betting legislation will get approval this year
  • Legislation set to be filed this week will be similar to the bill that fell short last year by one vote
  • A recent poll shows that 47% of voters in the state would support legalizing online betting
Sports fans celebrated while looking at a phone
Signs are pointing to online sports betting legislation getting sufficient support this year from North Carolina lawmakers. [Image:]

An exciting time

Lawmakers in North Carolina are getting ready to file a new bill this week that would legalize online sports betting in the state. North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper believes that it is likely that sports betting legislation will get approval this year. A bill fell short by just a single vote last year; it had bipartisan support, but also bipartisan opposition.

believes that there will be enough support this time around

The new House bill will be similar to that piece of legislation that narrowly missed out last year. Representative Jason Saine believes that there will be enough support this time around for it to achieve passage. Talking about the benefits of legalizing online sports betting, Saine said: “This will be something that’s legitimate in the state, something that we can see. We can put some transparency on it and see where the money moves.”

Optimism abounds

One of the most contentious aspects of the betting legislation last year was the inclusion of college sporting event wagering. It was removed at the last minute and the bill was narrowly defeated.

47% of voters are in favor of legalizing online betting

A poll released by Meredith College last week might help quell concerns among lawmakers who might fear backlash from voters if they support legalization. The study found that 47% of voters are in favor of legalizing online betting for both college and professional sports, 34% are against the idea, and 19% are uncertain.

Governor Roy Cooper has long been a supporter of legalizing sports betting. Speaking about the potential for legislation to get approval in 2023, Cooper said: “I think it’s gonna pass from what I hear.”

He went on to talk about how it is important to have good legislation in place that will be fair to taxpayers and also give people what they want with legal sports betting.

Sports betting has its opponents

Those who opposed sports betting legislation last year often did not think that the state would actually generate the levels of revenue that were estimated. One non-partisan estimate was that legal online sports betting could bring between $8m and $24m each year to the state, while sponsors of previous bills believed that the total would be closer to the $50m mark.

North Carolina does already have retail sportsbooks at three tribal gaming facilities.

Some lawmakers are against most forms of gambling expansion as they fear rising levels of addiction and other types of societal issues. Certain lawmakers who were on the fence last year believe that introducing statewide retail sports betting before considering online sports betting would be more prudent.

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