The Louisiana state legislature has sent bills providing the framework for domestic sports betting to Governor John Bel Edwards, and nearly a week has expired while waiting for his pen to hit the paper.
What will be the state of legal sports betting in Louisiana if and when Governor Edwards signs the bill into law?
Once executed, 55 out of 64 parishes will be granted the right to bet on sports online, via mobile sportsbook applications on smartphones and tablets, as well as through the use of automated betting kiosks that can be used in person.
These kiosks will be maintained and run by the Louisiana Lottery Corporation and will be licensed out to eligible restaurants and bars. The LA Lottery Corp. will also provide domestic online betting as well as mobile betting apps.
Kiosks are a convenient option for on-the-go bettors, but what about legit in-person sportsbooks in Louisiana casinos?
SB 247 grants allowances for up to 20 sportsbook licenses to be issued to regional casinos and racetracks. While these licenses are expected to be gobbled up in short order, if for some reason they are not all spoken for by January 1, 2022, outside vendors will then be able to submit an application.
Any domestic sportsbook that is issued a license for an in-person venue will be granted an allowance to accept wagers on sports online and through mobile sports betting applications.
While these inclusions are a positive step because quite often when states allow for mobile options, in-person operations take in much less action. With these provisions, the brick-and-mortar books can at least tap into the online revenues to stay afloat.
Louisiana legislators are hip to the inordinate proportion of bettors that utilize online and mobile options because they’ll include a provision that taxes net-based revenues at 15% while in-person wagers are taxed at 10%.
The real bummer for Bayou State bettors is that the law requires a minimum age of 21 to partake in gambling on sports with a domestic book.
Sports bettors in LA that are at least 18 years of age will still be able to access offshore sportsbook sites that are able to accept bets over the web within the state because of their international base of operations.
However, lawmakers in the state of Louisiana must be commended for placing all domestic options on the table for regional sports gamblers, with the only window of opportunity for tax dollars to escape being the above-mentioned offshore betting options for 18 to 20-year-old patrons.
Once signed into law, legal sports betting in New Orleans and other areas of Louisiana could debut this fall, which would capitalize on the opportunity to take advantage of betting on the NFL prior to the end of the season.