The American Gaming Association (AGA) has released a statement in response to earlier news that Governor Roy Cooper has given sign off on S 154 – a bill which enjoyed overwhelming bipartisan support – to authorize sports betting at two tribal casinos in North Carolina

With Governor Cooper’s signature, the Tarheel State becomes the 19th jurisdiction in America to authorize sports betting and the seventh so far in 2019.

“Legalizing sports betting in North Carolina is a welcome step in the fight against the dangerous, illegal market,” said Bill Miller, president and CEO of the American Gaming Association. 

He added: “Providing North Carolinians with legal alternatives to illicit offshore operators will help safeguard consumers and the integrity of the games, advance responsible gaming initiatives and give state and federal law enforcement an advantage in combating illegal gambling.”

There has been further comment, too, on the estimated timescale for an official sports betting launch in the state. Harrah’s Regional Vice President of Marketing, Brian Saunooke, quoted in the Raleigh News & Observer hinted that work to get a sportsbook up and running would take a few months, missing out on the opening of the football season.

“We are targeting the late fall,” he told the Observer. “By late fall, football will be in full swing,” Saunooke said. “That’s an exciting time for sports bettors in general. We will be looking at other sports as well. We expect to have a full offering similar to what you would have in other markets, like Las Vegas.”