North Carolina Senate Passes New Sports Betting Legislation

  • SB 688 passed the North Carolina Senate by a vote of 26 to 19.
  • Mobile betting could take effect by January 1 2022 if approved by the House and signed into law.
  • The bill includes an 8% tax rate on sportsbook operators and $500,000 license fees.

RALEIGH, N.C. - A groundbreaking new sports betting bill just made it through the senate after its third reading.

After passing by a 26 to 19 bipartisan vote, Senate Bill 688 now heads to the North Carolina House of Representatives.

“Prohibition doesn't work,” said Jim Perry to Senate. “We know that activity takes place today, whether we like it or not. I look at this as more of a voluntary tax. They're already spending – choosing to spend their money that way – and I believe I owe it to the people I represent to try to find alternative means to meet the needs of the community."

When Could The Bill Take Effect?

Assuming the House is able to resolve negotiations, and the bill is signed into law this year, it would take effect on January 1, 2022. This would give North Carolina sports betting a small window of time to see mobile action before the Super Bowl

Although the bill did pass the Senate, if the House is unable to find consensus on the bill it may find itself dead on the chamber floor. While this result may displease many who are interested in sports betting, those who oppose the bill such as John Rustin, president of the North Carolina Family Policy Council, are likely hoping for this outcome.

While at the committee meetings, Rustin claimed that if the bill were to take effect it would increase rates of child abuse, divorce, domestic violence, and even suicide.

Breaking Down North Carolina Senate Bill 688

SB 688 seeks to launch sports betting operations in North Carolina regulated by the North Carolina State Lottery Commission.

The bill offers between 10 and 12 sports betting licenses for operators, and would have a five-year term with an application fee of $500,000.

The adjusted gross revenue of online gambling operators will be taxed by 8%, with 50% of those tax dollars being allocated to a new North Carolina Major Events, Games, and Attractions Fund.