Will the legalization of sports betting in Arizona encourage the state to legalize online casinos?

Gambling laws in the U.S. have always been a changing landscape. There are currently a few states that still do not have any form of gambling.

Though, 2021 was always going to be a big deal for those who reside in Arizona but want to enjoy the same sports betting legislation of its neighbor, Nevada.

It has been a long journey to get Arizona to its position now, and there have been many obstacles in the way.

But Arizona has legalized sports betting.

Arizona Gets Sports Betting

Doug Ducey has been working hard to get Arizona to enjoy the benefits of a range of gambling and sport betting.

Doug made it clear that he intended to give Arizona’s gaming landscape a revamp and pull the state in line with many other American states.

A sports bill was introduced in 2019 that would allow sportsbooks to operate from licensed tribal casinos and liquor establishments in Arizona.

Unfortunately, SB1158 did not make it beyond the legislative sessions.

In 2020 the bills were reintroduced, and one of them made it to the committee. Progress was expected to be made in 2021, and Doug Ducey saw that it happened.

The U.S. Department of Interior has recently approved and amended the tribal-state gaming compact.

Doug Ducey finalized the agreement.

It is big news for sports groups as they will now be able to offer wagers on some of America’s biggest games.

It is expected to be one of the fastest launches; the bill was only recently signed (April 2021), and it is expected to take full effect on September 9th.

House Bill 2772 was initially introduced in February of 2021.

The Fine Print

 The sports betting bill will allow up to ten tribes to apply for an online sportsbook license, and for those online sportsbooks, the tribes will act like regular commercial operators.

All sportsbooks will be required to pass license requirements.

The bill also allows for the playing of paid fantasy sports betting legal as well. ADG officials must ensure bettors are within state lines when they are placing any bets.

Under the bill, professional sports organizations are also permitted sportsbook licenses.

The progress leading to the new gaming compact

Arizona has been enjoying a healthy casino income for many years due to the Native American casinos. However, to play slots at online casinos, residents of the state have had to access the games through offshore providers.

Arizona residents have played a statewide legal lottery for many years, and it is one of the most popular in America.

  • Before it was banned in 2017, horse and dog racing were the dominant forms of gambling in Arizona.
  • 2013 saw the opening of the first Navajo Nation’s casino in Arizona.
  • The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act was passed in 1988.
  • There are currently 25 casinos on tribal lands.
  • In 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States lifted the federal ban on sports betting.

Lifting the ban led to 11 states immediately legalizing sports betting, including New Jersey and New York.

Which states do not have legal in-person gambling?

Progress has been made for many states, yet Utah and Hawaii have no plan to introduce in-person gambling.

Hawaii wishes to remain a family-friendly tourist location, and so they keep a tight rein on gambling activities. However, Hawaii does allow the social playing of poker played in homes.

Utah has a 100% ban on all betting.

Are legal online casinos good for the Arizonian economy?

All states that had been hoping for the legalization of sports betting pushed through bills asap. States like New Jersey and New York already had infrastructure ready to implement sports betting changes.

Until 2018, the only state that was legal for sports betting was Nevada.  Economically, Nevada charges $2,000 a year for a licensing fee for sportsbook operators and has a tax rate of 6.75%. Nevada is unique as it has had legal sports betting since 1949 – which has also contributed to it being a popular tourist destination.

New Jersey was a state that put up quite a fight to add sports betting to their already extensive gambling options. Their argument, which won them the case after eight long years, was that it was illegal to have sports betting online in one state.  New Jersey has an estimated tax revenue of $1.2 billion and a gambling revenue of $5.8 billion.

It is no surprise that New Jersey was the third state to legalize online poker, horse racing, and casino games like slots. Pennsylvania is another state that has seen some incredible revenue since legalizing (and regulating) online gambling. Online poker, sports betting, and online casinos are all legal. In 2017 Pennsylvania saw a total gross gaming revenue of 3226.92 million USD, coming a close second to Nevada.

If New Jersey, Nevada, and Pennsylvania are used as benchmarks, it’s easy to see that legalizing sports betting, online casinos, and gambling is a recipe for financial state growth.

It is a safe assumption to say that Doug Ducey is forward-thinking. For example, he pushed and pressed for the bills for sports betting to be legalized in Arizona. As a result, we will likely see Arizona get a significant bump in its revenue.

One of the essential factors in sports betting is to know that mobile sports betting can make a significant percent of the bets that happen.

Legal Sports Report’s Adam Candee has previously stated that while New Jersey and Pennsylvania legalized sports betting quickly, 90% of their bets each month are being placed online.

These figures show that it would be an intelligent move to legalize online sports betting and other types of gambling too.

Scroll to Top