Sports betting in Maine has taken a significant step forward.
This week, the Maine Gambling Control Unit (MGCU) announced that provisional sports betting applications are available on the organization’s website. The MGCU will review any applications that come in. But they cannot approve them until regulators and lawmakers iron out rulemaking guidelines.
This movement at the regulatory level means that we may see Maine sports betting go live late this year, or in early 2024.
Five types of license applications are available
There are five kinds of licenses available on the MGCU’s sports betting page:
- Facility sports wagering license: For physical locations that want to offer sports betting.
- Mobile sports wagering license: For operators that want to offer mobile sports wagering
- Supplier license: For companies that want to sell goods and services related to sports betting
- Management services license: Allows a company to manage the operations on behalf of a sports betting licensee
- Occupational license: For anyone who works for a mobile or physical sportsbook and is part of maintaining and/or improving the sportsbook
Interested businesses can apply for any of the first four licenses via one application. Employees have their applications. Each license comes with set fees for the initial application and, in some cases, license renewals:
- Facility sports wagering operator license: $4,000
- Background investigation for facility operators: $5,000
- Mobile sports wagering operator license: $200,000
- Management services license: $40,000
- Supplier license: $40,000
- Employee application: $302, then $25 to renew for a year or $50 to renew for three years.
- Background investigation deposit for mobile operators, management services, and suppliers: $10,000
Those applying for any one of the five licenses must fill out a personal history form in addition to their application.
Maine closes in on sports betting launch
Gov. Janet Mills signed off on legal Maine sports betting in the spring of 2022. In the next few months, MGCU boss Milton Champion indicated it could take up to two years to launch sports betting.
This was a bit of a shock, as most states that legalize sports betting launch in some form within a year.
However, Champion said he wanted to have to time talk to all stakeholders involved. As well as provide time for the public to weigh in. Champion, a gaming veteran, wanted to launch sports betting the right way. He hinted that he believed regulations could roll out in early 2023.
That prediction seems to be on track, as applications are now live and rules are pending.
Online sports betting in Maine is exclusive to tribes
The state’s laws allow four federally recognized tribes to operate online sports betting on their own, or hire a US sports betting operator like FanDuel or DraftKings to do it for them. This provision in the state’s sports betting laws is a big deal for the tribes. Nationally, online sports betting makes up more than 90% of all money legally bet on sports.
The state’s laws allow for 10 retail sports betting licenses for casinos, horse tracks, and OTB properties.