NORTH CAROLINA — North Carolina lawmakers could take the first of two final steps to legalize mobile sports betting. The state House is expected to take its final vote on Tuesday.
The bill gives sports fans an opportunity to put their money where their mouth is. It would allow people to place bets inside major stadiums and online legally.
If Gov. Roy Cooper signs off on the bill, it would call for a 14% tax on sports betting operators. That revenue would benefit schools and other programs across the state.
Senate lawmakers also changed the bill to allow pool betting on horse races, and placing bets inside large stadiums like Charlotte Motor Speedway.
If the bill passes and becomes law, it would take effect on Jan. 8, 2024 — the date of next year’s college football championship.
However, opponents worry this bill will cause more harm than good. Rev. Mark Creech of the Christian Action League told Senate lawmakers that “all the money in the world that we might gain from this bill… Can never replace the virtues that will be diminished because of its legalization.”
Others say this is a win-win for everybody. Christopher Boan with the website Bet Carolina said North Carolina is behind the eight ball when it comes to legalizing betting.
“There is no argument against sports betting,” he said. “You already have sports betting in North Carolina, you might as well add legal, mobile sports betting because otherwise, people are going to use the offshore apps, they’re going to go to Tennessee, they’re going to go to Virginia, and you’re just going to get zero tax revenue out of it, and you’re going to look like a dunce at the end of the day.”
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