Arizona sports betting bill passed to Governor

Arizona has moved another step closer to legalising sports betting after the Senate passed a bill that would legalise sports and fantasy betting, as well as a new keno game run by the state lottery. The bill is now heading to the governor’s office for his signature.

A step away

Legal sports betting is a step away in the US state.

On Monday, the Senate passed bill HB 2772, an identical bill to SB 1797, by a 23-6 vote. The bill, which is now heading to Arizona Governor Doug Ducey’s desk, is likely to be signed into law as early as this week by Ducey, who has been a proponent of sports betting.

However, the vote drew support and opposition from members of both parties. Critics of the bill argued that the licences would be too expensive for tribes to get their hands on and questioned how the revenue received from betting will be distributed by the state.

Details & estimated revenue

The bill proposes to allow as many as 20 mobile operators, split between 10 professional sports teams and 10 tribes, and some of the nation’s first in-stadium sportsbooks to acquire licences. All of them could offer mobile betting by contracting with online wagering companies such as FanDuel Group or DraftKings.

The off-reservation sportsbooks could also offer betting at sites or in nearby commercial properties, making Arizona one of the first states with in-stadium retail sportsbooks.

The bill also allows certain sportsbook licencing rights to horse tracks and off-track betting facilities.

According to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee, which reviews new laws to estimate their financial impact, this new law could generate an annual revenue of up to $34.2 million (£25 million) to the state.

Next steps

Assuming a speedy signature, the state and operators would want to set the date to be at the beginning of the NFL season.

Yet, the state still needs to finalise and set up regulations and operator fees/taxes and the Arizona Department of Gaming needs to approve further rules and each sportsbook’s licence.

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