If you haven’t noticed, Indiana is now part of the sports betting landscape.
But the Hoosier State didn’t just come out of nowhere; it has been part of the discussion from the very beginning.
Way back when, Indiana was one of the first states to try and pass a comprehensive sports betting bill. What the state ended up doing was gifting us the now infamous term, “integrity fee.” That is all in the past. In the present, Indiana tossed down $91.6 million in sports betting handle in its first full month of wagering.
That number says we mean business.
Only focusing on Indiana
I was curious. Not only did I want to know the secret to such success, but I wanted to know what the gatekeepers thought of other states. I reached out to Sara Gonso-Tait, executive director of the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC), to ask the simple question: “How much joy do you get from watching the chaos in Illinois and Ohio?”
But Gonso-Tait is a professional at every level. She opted to take the high road and declined to comment on the misguided efforts of Illinois and Ohio at passing and implement sports betting.
“We have been so busy in the state of Indiana that we are staying in our own lane and focusing on all of the busy things that we have going on right now,” Gonso-Tait said.
“(IGC) had a very aggressive timeline to launch retail sports betting, but we were really surprised that we received a very quick turnaround on mobile betting. So we’ve been busy with other legislative mandates that were in the bill that we are in the process of implementing. In addition, Horshoe South, by the Louisville market, is opening a $90 million land-based casino in the next month. It’s been really busy, but it’s all good.”
It was smart. The last thing you want is a neighboring regulatory body pointing out all your flaws, like failing to decide who should regulate sports betting in Ohio: the Ohio Casino Control Commission, or the Ohio Lottery Commission. Or even worse, failing to figure out that an insanely high tax rate means you cant build a casino in the third-largest city in the country, Chicago.