We are in the height of the legislative season, and several states are seeing more progress than ever when it comes to legalizing sports betting.
Not only has the sports betting effort in Vermont gotten farther than ever, with a bill passing through the House and onto the Senate Friday, but it has done so with remarkably little opposition. Friday’s floor vote came and went in the span of two minutes with no debate and an overwhelming aye voice vote.
With Friday being the crossover deadline for bills in the state, the House rushed through most legislation, so amended language to the bill could not be debated. According to the VT Digger, that language included budget caps on advertising and tiered fines for repeat violations.
The basics of H127 would delegate sports betting to the state lottery, which would negotiate revenue share deals with anywhere from two to six operators. License fees and the revenue share rate are variable, but the minimum expected share agreement will be 20%.
The minimum legal age to sports bet would be 18. The fiscal note on the bill suggests the venture would bring in around $2 million in revenue the first year, but could go up to roughly $10 million by the fifth year of operation.
The bill also features appropriations for responsible gambling measures and tasks the lottery with producing an annual study around RG in the state.
A similar bill, SB105, is already floating around in the Senate, where this bill heads next. SB105 currently sits in the Committee on Economic Development, Housing, and General Affairs. Revenue from the bill is included in the state budget for this year, which does bode well for its chances this year.