While New York advances slowly towards getting legal sports betting on the statute books, Governor Andrew Cuomo remains staunchly opposed to the introduction of mobile betting in the state. In a radio interview with WAMC he downplayed the financial benefits from sports wagering, saying that neighboring New Jersey had raised a mere $13m from sports wagering, describing that number as a “rounding figure in our state”.

Speaking to the network’s Alan Chartock, Cuomo said: “Sports betting, first of all, does not make you that much money, Cuomo said in the Monday interview. New Jersey has sports betting, it’s on TV all the time. You can’t turn on the darn TV without seeing it. They raised something like $13 million dollars – $13 million dollars is a rounding error in our state. So I don’t even think the economic benefit is there.”

But pushback on Cuomo’s anti-mobile demeanor continues from the state legislature, with lawmakers saying they are willing to include provisions for mobile betting in proposed regulations. Backing that approach is Assemblyman Gary Pretlow whose bill would facilitate sports betting at locations including Madison Square Garden and Empire City, as well as via mobile.

Pretlow believes that by failing to include mobile, New York is missing the boat. Bettors don’t want to have to go to a location to bet, he suggested, because most of the action takes place via betting apps. He also countered Cuomo’s derisory assessment of the potential revenue stream, predicting that if mobile was adopted into the legislation, New York could overtake New Jersey “in a heartbeat”.  

Should Cuomo’s stance prove indomitable New Yorkers would likely be able to place sporting bets in time for summer, but only in person at one of the state’s four upstate licensed casinos. That would be in direct contrast with the Garden State where 80 per cent of bets are placed via mobile.