CT Governor Ned Lamont; Image: CBS News
Sports betting in the U.S. has been incredibly dynamic in the past few years. PAPSA, the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was brought in 1992 and practically gave the state of Nevada a monopoly on sports betting. In 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled PAPSA to be unconstitutional. This brought about a domino effect that saw many states starting to legalize sports betting, as well as online gaming in other forms such as casino and poker. After the eradication of this law, every state in the U.S. can now legalize and control its own sports betting and remote gambling market. However it is still illegal for offshore gambling websites to operate in the U.S. and processing payments is considered a violation of the Federal Wire Act.
It is highly probable that at the start of the next NFL season, sports betting in Connecticut would have been legalized. It is also possible that it would offer online casino games as many other states that signed bills into law did. Work is ongoing concerning agreement that might make Connecticut the leading state in terms of generating revenue from gambling. Also, a large number of sports fans and bettors in Connecticut, as well as Massachusetts and New York, are excited at the prospect of betting by a mobile device and computer within these state limits will become.
Gambling in Connecticut
Currently Connecticut allows gambling in land-based casinos, but does not allow sports betting. You have to be at least 21years old to gamble in Connecticut. The government generates revenue from gambling activities that take place in brick and mortar casinos, where Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos are the two major casinos in Connecticut. Legislators, operators and many members of the public expect that legalization of sports betting in Connecticut will be of great advantage as it will serve as another means of generating revenue. It also presents punters with other forms of betting that are different from the regular casino games they are accustomed to.
Connecticut Legalizing Sports Betting
The state has commenced its move towards the legalization of sports betting. The Governor, Ned Lamont, has spoken about sports betting, and it is being put under consideration. The extension of state-tribal gaming rights is a step further towards legalization. Other regulations and bills need to be put in place before sports betting can be legalized in Connecticut.
There are two state tribes, Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan, who run the two major casinos in the state. These tribes have opposing sports betting within Connecticut because the legislature has refused to agree to them having exclusive rights over sports betting in the state.
In recent years however, things are beginning to take a better turn. One of the sports betting bills yet to be legalized is that the two tribes would be allowed to offer sports betting and retail betting on tribal land. The tribes still want control over sports betting and the legislators are beginning to consider a way to go about it.
Main Points of Agreement
Governor Ned Lamont announced the sports betting agreement with just one Indian tribe instead of the two in the state, which was considered a risky move. The Governor’s office announced an agreement with the Mohegan Tribe in early March. The announcement gave some insight into the plans for legalizing gambling in the state:
- Operator revenues from sports betting and iGaming will be taxed at 13.5% and 20% respectively.
- The Mohegan Indians will be able to operate one sports betting and casino brand/skin.
- Another skin will be awarded to the Connecticut Lottery.
- An additional 15 sports betting retail locations will be established.
- New sports betting venues that will be run by the Connecticut Lottery will be built in the cities of Hartford and Bridgeport.
- Sportech, the state’s parimutual betting operator will be able to sub-license some of the retail venues, but it will not qualify for an online license.
Even though legalizing sports betting is still in motion, the two tribes are preparing towards offering sports betting to people. Foxwoods Resort Casinos is owned by Mashantucket Pequot and they have partnered with DraftKings to be their bookmaker. While Mohegan Sun might partner with FanDuel. These two casinos are rivals and are owned by each of the two-state tribes. The states tribe already have licensed casinos, sports betting would just be like an expansion to their already vast gaming activity.