Sports betting has been passed in over half of the U.S. states since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down PASPA in 2018. However, most states in the southern belt have been slow to act on the potentially new industry. Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina have no seen signs of progress in passing sports betting.
The Palmetto State could see signs of sports betting life heading into 2021. South Carolina has a bill filed for sports betting under House Joint Resolution 3395. The bill is very vague on what South Carolina’s sports betting industry looks like, but it is better than nothing. It can also get South Carolina lawmakers to look into legalizing sports betting in the state.
The bill could also expand overall casino gaming across South Carolina.
What the Bill Proposes
H3395 would allow sports betting in the state, and people will be able to bet on horse racing and pro sports. There is no decision with betting on college sports, and h3395 also proposes Vegas-like casino legalization. The bill also proposes that a government body oversee sports betting and decide which regions to have wagering legal.
For now, South Carolina will be looking to form a study group on the sports betting industry in 2021. It will research the pros and cons of legalizing the new industry in the state and help lawmakers get a better idea if it is worth it or not.
The due to decide on sports betting legalization will not come until January 21, 2022. However, South Carolina lawmakers will discuss the idea of wagering and casino in the state throughout 2021. For sports betting to become legal in South Carolina, the state will need to amend the constitution for it to pass.
This could make it more difficult to pass, especially with Democrats being the ones that filed the bill. The state will need to see lawmakers from both parties have a shot to pass. Republicans in South Carolina control the state Senate and House.
Estimates have put the earliest chance of a sports betting bill passing will not be until the beginning of the 2022 football season.
What to Expect in 2021
Expect more news and potential progress coming out about the South Carolina gaming industry next year. Lawmakers are expected to discuss sports betting in the first meetings after the New Year and give early signs on a real chance of passing a bill in 2022.
South Carolina will have a study committee formed to see the impact of the sports betting industry on a state.
State lawmakers can also figure out what the state will allow people to bet on. The bill only stated that horse racing and pro sports would be available to bet. However, South Carolina has no pro sports teams in the state and is much more popular with college sports.
Lawmakers will most likely go back and forth among those details.
North Carolina will be launching sports betting soon, which could impact South Carolina’s decision. Although Georgia has not passed sports betting, the state does have a bill moving through the state and hopes of passing in 2021. If South Carolina’s two neighboring states launch sports betting before South Carolina, it could pressure the state to do the same.