In search of the home stretch to inaugurate sports betting | State policy


Thirteen of Louisiana’s 20 traditional casinos have applied to handle sports betting – the other seven are expected to apply by the Jan. 1 deadline – and the first applicants are close to being able to start booking baseball, football and betting. other events.

Chief Gambling Regulator Ronnie Johns has the power to sign a “temporary operating certificate” that would immediately allow a casino to begin offering sports betting – at least for in-person, on-site betting.

“It is possible, but I seriously doubt that I will sign in the next two weeks,” said Johns, who chairs the Gaming Control Board. “But I anticipate some recommendations very soon.”

He is still awaiting the results of the Louisiana State Police requested verification of operators, personnel and procedures. Casinos are required to set up a lounge that limits access to punters 21 and over. All of these security plans and procedures should also be reviewed.

Despite a slowdown due to Hurricane Ida, eight casinos filed an application Thursday to offer sports betting in Louisiana, according to the…

Johns said Hurricane Ida delayed the process by about two weeks as investigating soldiers were reassigned to storm rescue and recovery. They are now back to do the required suitability studies on sports betting applications.

Several of the casinos are good to go, once the paperwork is done, said Wade Duty, executive director of the Louisiana Casino Association. The Baton Rouge-based organization is the trade association of 20 so-called “brick and mortar” establishments that the state has licensed to operate casinos on riverboats, at racetracks and on land in New Orleans. .

Initially, bets will only be taken at temporary sports betting lounges inside a casino, Duty said. Several casinos are building multi-million dollar facilities with banks of TVs and other equipment, but it’s on the road. The roughly 80 pages of new laws and 30 pages of new regulations will also allow sports betting on smartphones and from computers.

Each of the 20 casinos will contract with two vendors to handle geofencing, software and other equipment for phone and online betting. Unlike casinos, which have already been investigated by state police, entrepreneurs need a comprehensive review that takes time, Duty said.

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In addition, the Louisiana Lottery Corp. was allowed to supervise sports betting kiosks that would be placed in bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. The Lottery is still working on its rules and does not expect it to be operational until January or later.

Louisiana regulators on Thursday approved emergency rules to allow adults to bet on sporting events in Louisiana by midway …

Meanwhile, the Paragon Casino Resort, which is owned by Louisiana’s Tunica-Biloxi tribe south of Marksville, opened its sportsbook on Wednesday. Several TV stations showed Joe Horn, the retired New Orleans Saints tall receiver, step into the casino’s new lounge chair and place the first bet. Horn played a long bet with a big payout, in which Horn had to pick the winners in seven games to win his bet.

Paragon and four other Louisiana casinos owned by Native American Indian tribes are federally licensed and not state regulated. Their agreements allow Native American casinos to operate games approved by state voters. Otherwise, these casinos do not pay state taxes and do not comply with state law.

In November 2020, voters in 55 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes approved allowing sports betting in their parishes. Earlier this year, the Louisiana legislature and Governor John Bel Edwards established laws that spell out how sports betting would be licensed, operated, and taxed.

Bets would be taxed at 10%, if bets are placed in sports betting rooms at casinos, and 15% on cell phones or websites. Taxes would be on the net proceeds – the amount remaining after bets are covered – and would be paid by major licensees.

The game is expected to contribute $ 644.2 million in revenue, not including sports betting proceeds, to this year’s budget. Behind income and sales taxes, gambling is the largest contributor to the state’s general fund of $ 9.9 billion.

The Gaming Control Board meets on October 21.

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