Sports betting is still on pause after a senate meeting on Wednesday that showed no signs of moving forward with the industry. The General Government and Agency Review Committee reviewed the Ohio sports betting bill briefly. Still, it noted that the bill is outdated with the Ohio Congress changes after the election.
“We welcome the opportunity to have another hearing at this point, Chairman, because there are some folks, I think, some of whom have been participants in this exercise we’ve been on for the last, boy, going on 14 months, who have some very, very significant and useful things for the committee to hear,” said Sen. John Ecklund.
Ohio lawmakers who are in favor of sports betting in the Buckeye State will need to find a way to update the bill, so the rest of the state’s lawmakers can vote on passing.
Backing the Bill
The SB 111 bill is slightly different from HB 194 and will need to continue to be revised in the upcoming months. Ohio is hurting themselves, with Indiana, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania all having legalized and mobile sports betting available. Michigan is soon to launch online betting, and Kentucky is the remaining bordering state that has not considered the new industry.
Lobbyists for sports betting is campaigning in Ohio to get a bill through. Those included are Boyd Gaming, DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, Jack Entertainment, MGM Resorts, and Penn National.
esports betting. Although there still needs to be other details hashed out, Ohio does have some positives with sports betting on SB 111. The Buckeye State could also use legal sports betting.
States are dealing with serious budget deficits due to COVID-19, and mobile betting would be a huge get for Ohio to help with the crisis.
Ohio Sports Betting History
Very few midwest states have not passed sports betting, which is putting Ohio behind the eight ball. If the state can get a bill through by the end of 2020 or 2021, Ohio will most likely continue to lose out on hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue due to Ohio lawmakers dropping the ball on a bill.
The shakeup in the Ohio chambers does not help the issue either. On election day, Ohio lost a few key backers for a sports betting bill adding another setback in the legalization process. The Buckeye State needs all hands on deck at this point to be able to get a bill through.
Also, Republicans are running both the state’s house and senate, putting another hurdle in the process, with most backers being Democrats. Even if the bill is passed, there is no telling how long it will take for the state to get regulations going.
That process could end up taking multiple months or even a year, depending on how cooperative the committees are to getting a legalized sports betting industry going. Overall, there are some positive things to say about SB 111, but it could be a bit longer before it is officially passed.