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Pennsylvania Begins Sports Betting Licensing Process For Casinos

Regulators Are Also Drafting The Rules For Sports Books

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The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced Thursday that state casinos can begin seeking approval to offer sports betting, in-person and over the internet.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed a 1992 federal law that restricted sports books to just Nevada. Pennsylvania gaming regulators said they have started crafting regulations for the new activity. The Keystone State, home to a dozen casinos, approved legislation related to sports betting last year. The new law called for “sports wagering certificates,” which are reserved for the state-approved gambling facilities.

“The actions taken by the Board are the first in our efforts to launch sports wagering in Pennsylvania as soon as possible,” said the Board’s Executive Director Kevin O’Toole. “In the coming months, we expect to regularly ask the Board for approval of additional temporary regulations that will move us toward a launch of this new gaming initiative.”

Pennsylvania could be among the first states to implement legal sports betting. New Jersey and Delaware are expected to get there first, however. Around 20 states have so far indicated interest in sports books. There have also been calls for federal oversight.

The gambling reform package that legalized sports betting in Pennsylvania pending the SCOTUS ruling, was also the vehicle for online casino approval in the state. Regulators are already in the process of approving online gaming platforms.

The nationwide market for sports betting is expected to grow to $4b-$6b within the next five years. Americans are said to bet about $150 billion illegally each year.