PlayUSA Rewind: Sports Betting In Nebraska Is Approved – With The Exclusion Of Mobile

Written By Nicholaus Garcia on May 26, 2021 - Last Updated on December 6, 2023
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May has come and gone, but it leaves us with some excellent gambling news to end the month.

This week, Nebraska sports betting awaits the governor’s signature, online casinos are coming to Connecticut, and Richmond, Virginia, selects its casino partner.

For even more coverage, be sure and follow @VisitPlayUSA | @reporternickg | @brantjames for all the latest insights.

On the rewind:

Nebraska legalizes sports betting but with a catch

Sports betting is coming to the Cornhusker State but with a small catch.

Nebraska lawmakers approved a bill that permits retail sports betting but excludes mobile wagering and the ability to bet on in-state colleges.

The bill, LB 561, is now on its way to the desk of Gov. Pete Ricketts for his signature. Ricketts has till June 2 to sign or veto the bill. Should he choose the latter, Nebraska lawmakers have till June 3 to override the governor’s decision.

With a ban on in-state college betting, fans looking to place wagers on the Nebraska Cornhuskers will have to travel to neighboring Colorado or Iowa.

The takeaway: There are 19 states with legal, regulated sports betting. Washington State has passed a bill but yet to launch a product. Nebraska brings that total to 21 states.

Louisiana sports betting bill clears first hurdle

The Bayou State is only a few chamber votes away from legalizing sports betting.

On May 10, House Bill 697, which sets up taxes and fees for legal sports betting in Louisiana, was passed through the House by a vote of 78-24 and then through the Senate by a vote of 32-4.

  • 10% tax on retail sports betting
  • 15% tax on mobile sports betting

The second bill, SB 247, sets up regulations and procedures, was passed through the Senate and now heads to the House.

If it clears this remaining hurdle, both bills would then head to the governor for his signature.

The takeaway: Lawmakers in Louisiana have discussed the idea of sports betting dating back to 2018, but now it appears things are finally in the home stretch. The good thing is, lawmakers didn’t complicate things. There will be retail sportsbooks at casinos, mobile sports betting, and the lottery will have the ability to place betting kiosks in bars and restaurants.

Richmond finds its casino partner

And the winner of the coveted Richmond, Virginia, casino license is — Urban One.

But not so fast; there are still a few steps left before construction can begin. Residents will have the chance to vote on the project in a referendum on Nov. 2. Then, with city council approval, construction on the $600 million casino can start.

The selection of Urban One ends a months-long process that saw the elimination of major casino operators like Bally’s and Golden Nugget.

By being selected, Urban One is set to become the first Black-majority-owned casino and says its project will bring in $525 million in new tax revenue and create roughly 1,000 new jobs.

The takeaway: As local officials have said, this is a major step towards diversity and including for the gaming industry. The company will be partnering with Peninsula Pacific Entertainment, so it will be interesting to see how that relationship develops moving forward.

Online casino bill advances in Connecticut

It appears like online casinos and online sports betting are on their way to Connecticut.

After passing through the House with bipartisan support, a bill to legalize both forms of online gambling now heads to the Senate.

In a statement, Gov. Ned Lamont said, “I look forward to this measure’s swift passage in the Senate so we can start the federal process of ensuring this legislation and agreement is authorized.”

The Senate has till June 9 to vote on the bill.

Mobile sports betting in Connecticut comes after the Lamont reached an agreement with the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes. The deal gives the tribes exclusive rights to offer online casino games in exchange for sharing sports betting with the CT Lottery.

The takeaway: The online gambling market has seen success in Michigan, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, especially with online casinos. Tossing in mobile sports betting is an added bonus but an extremely valuable one at that.

Market Teasers

This week on Market Teasers, was DraftKings taking a page from the Penn National Gaming playbook by looking into acquiring Bleacher Report? And welcome Urban One Inc., the new soon-to-be casino in Virginia.

DraftKings Inc.

$DKNG | $48.00 | 0.37% change

  • There was a spike in trading after reports surfaced that DraftKings looked into acquiring Bleacher Report last year. Signs point to DKNG trying to move into the media space while further expanding its gambling empire.

Urban One Inc.

$UONEK | $3.54 | -1.3928% change

  • Urban One was just selected as the winner of the Richmond, VA, casino license. The stock continues to bounce around, dropping 13% last week. However, being the lone casino in a city with over 226,000 might bring nice returns.

** Market Teasers is not financial advice, nor am I a financial advisor. All figures were taken on May 25, market close.

Photo by Nati Harnik / Associated Press
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Nicholaus Garcia

Nick Garcia is a senior reporter for PlayUSA. Garcia provides analysis and in-depth coverage of the gambling industry with a key focus on online casinos, sports betting and financial markets. Garcia has been covering the US gambling market since 2017. He attended Texas Tech University as an undergrad and received a Master of Arts in Journalism from Columbia College Chicago.

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