The American Gaming Association (AGA) has submitted a letter to the Massachusetts General Court regarding the state’s sports betting bill, urging officials in the state to focus on three critical areas.
Massachusetts’ sports betting bill is currently heading to a conference committee in an attempt to resolve the differences between the House and Senate passed versions.
One of the major differences between the House and Senate sports betting bills is wagering on college sports. The Senate bill prohibits college sports wagering, while the House version approves it.
Within its letter, the AGA has expressed concern about three critical areas as Massachusetts officials discuss and resolve the differences between the House and Senate sports betting bills in the conference committee.
These three areas are potentially banning wagers on collegiate sporting events, placing excessive restrictions on sportsbook advertising, and adopting an unreasonable tax rate for sportsbook operators.
Regarding the ban on college sports betting, the AGA notes that a ban would not stop it from happening illegally and it could have damaging impacts, as bettors may place all their wagers in the illegal market since many prefer to keep their entire sports betting wallet with one operator.
The association states that legal wagering on college sports supports game integrity and the monitoring of college sports by regulators and law enforcement protects bettors, competitions, and athletes.
Regarding excessive restrictions on sportsbook advertising, the AGA said the advertising limitations in Massachusetts will keep legal operators from battling against the competitive advantages illegal sportsbooks enjoy.
The association communicated that in new markets, advertising helps to educate the public about legal and regulated sportsbooks, and it guarantees responsible gaming messages are received by customers.
As for Massachusetts’ tax rate on operators, the AGA highlighted that the Bay State should tax regulated operators at a reasonable rate to allow them to compete against illegal sportsbooks that do not pay state taxes.
The full letter from the AGA to the Massachusetts General Court can be read here.