Vermont and North Carolina sports betting bills signed by Governors

GOv Roy Cooper
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Legal sports betting will be arriving in two new states, as the Governors of both Vermont and North Carolina put pen to paper on respective bills yesterday. 

Vermont Governor Phil Scott put pen to paper on H127 to make the Green Mountain State the 38th state to legalize sports betting. Meanwhile, Gov. Roy Cooper of North Carolina makes it 28 states with legalized online sports betting. 

Gov. Cooper brings online sports betting to NC

North Carolina’s sports wagering bill – HB347 – was penned by Gov. Cooper, who outlined his pleasure that after multiple attempts, online sports betting was able to make it into law.

“This is an historic moment for the state of North Carolina and this will benefit our economy for generations to come,” Cooper said.

This moment came after the bill passed both chambers of the legislature. Following a series of amendments in the Senate, the House concurred in a 69-44 vote, giving the green light for the legislation to reach Cooper’s desk. 

The state has 12 months to launch mobile and online sports betting platforms, with the earliest launch date set for Jan 8, 2024. 

Between now and then, regulations will be devised by the state lottery and the licensing process will begin to determine which operators will obtain one of up to 12 licenses. HB347 also legalized ADW horse betting apps. 

The bill stipulates that a five-year license will cost operators $5m, whilst GGR tax is set at 18%. Promotional credit deductions are not allowed under HB347. 

Vermont also joins sports betting scene

On the same day that the ninth-largest state formally legalized online sports betting, Vermont became the 38th state to have legalized sports betting after Gov. Scott penned HB127.

“I first proposed Vermont legalize sports betting several years ago and I’m happy the Legislature has come to an agreement, as well,” Scott said in a statement. “We know many Vermonters already participate in the marketplace and bringing it above board provides important resources and consumer protections.”

The journey to Gov. Scott’s desk has been relatively long, given Vermont’s legislature approved the bill over a month ago. 

Following the passage of HB127, two-to-six operators will be licensed in the Green Mountain State and will be regulated by the Vermont Lottery. 

Determining those operators’ licensing fees is a tiered structure depending on how many operators are eventually accepted, as follows: 

  • Two operators, $412,500 per operator
  • Three operators, $366,666 per operator
  • Four operators, $343,750 per operator
  • Five operators, $330,000 per operator
  • Six operators, $320,833 per operator

Moreover, those operators interested in obtaining a license must offer at least 20% of GGR to the state in order to be considered.

Next, the Department of Liquor and Lottery will issue a request for proposals in July, with the winners selected in September. Sports betting is set to go live in January 2024.