Louisiana Sportsbooks Bill Clears House

The introduction of Louisiana regulated bookmakers smoothly overcame the first legislative hurdle this week. Voters in 55 of the 068 state parishes approved a betting referendum in November 2020. Now the state legislature is debating what rules of implementation will apply to bookmakers.

Early results show that well-planned legislation Introducing early will introduce regulated retail and mobile bookmakers from Louisiana by 2022.

Plan for Mobile Louisiana Sportsbooks

State Representative John Stefanski (R-Crowley) introduced HB 697, which creates a tax and royalty structure for all future bookmakers. His bill went through the 80-27 house, quickly laying a foundation on which lawmakers could build.

The bill is now being submitted to the State Senate, where the accompanying motion has already been approved by a judicial committee. Through HB 697, the state charges a tax of 18% on personal retail bookmakers and a 19% rate on mobile betting. Prior to the revision, the online betting tax rate was 20%. Taxes will be calculated based on the net proceeds after the winning bets have been paid.

Another component of HB 697 is that it is awarded by the state lottery retail and internet licenses. This allows smaller businesses such as bars and restaurants to be included. The lottery will be able to cooperate with a recognized operator of betting kiosks in Louisiana. These will be similar to video poker / keno and are a cheap option for additional stakeholders.

The Senate passes the rules on sports betting

While HB deals with taxes and fees, SB 235 covers the Louisiana bookmaker regulations. The Senate Act complements and complements what the House has gone through. Since its introduction, the Senate Regulatory Act has been completely changed. While most of the recipes are similar to before, the bill now includes:

  • 24 licenses for Louisiana River Boats, Racecourse and Harrah's New Orleans Casino.
  • Each of the 24 licenses includes two skins for supporting mobile devices.
    • That's why players can have up to 45 online betting options .
  • Retail sports betting needs to be built elsewhere than the existing casino floors.
  • The initial license fees will be 250, 03 0 or $ 500, 006 0 for a period of five years.

The initial license application period would be until January 2022 under SB 202. Professional sports facilities such as the Superdome will not receive retail licenses under this plan. Other states have detailed teams and venues in their sports betting laws. Louisiana is taking a different path.

Louisiana Sportsbooks will fund education and disability services

The coordinated introduction of a complete program for Louisiana bookmakers involves another bill: SB 157. This final piece of the legislative puzzle breaks down the revenue from new sports betting. Unlike the other two bills, SB 142 remains unclear with plans about details to be worked out by legislators.

However, the proceeds appear to be earmarked for education and services for Louisiana with disabilities. The division of the pie between the two priorities is still unclear.

The next income-sharing debate will focus on state or local budgets. Since nine parishes voted to drop the bookmakers, lawmakers hope that most of the proceeds will go to councils. This would avoid gains for residents who oppose the bets.

All three accounts are designed to work together towards a comprehensive implementation plan. At this point, it seems like most of the debates have focused on where the money goes, not on the rules of the bookmakers themselves. With the application period running through January, it will be difficult, but not impossible, to bring Louisiana bookmakers in time for the Super Bowl.

Brad Vanderhide

Brad Vanderhide is an avid blackjack player and sportsbook whose only rule is never to bet on or against the beloved Cleveland Browns. With a background in politics, law, and government compliance, his articles provide a general overview of the changing online gambling landscape. As a native of Ohio, Brad is looking forward to getting his state out of its way and opening up legalized sports betting and online casino games.

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