Temporary licenses for online sports betting in Maine could be issued by November to allow the long-anticipated launch in the state.
In May 2022, Gov. Janet Mills signed the legislation officially becoming law on Aug. 2, 2022.
Following a public hearing in January and a public comment period finalizing in June, the Maine Gambling Control Unit (MGCU) has submitted proposed sports betting rules to the attorney general’s office for review.
As spokesperson for the Maine Department of Public Safety Shannon Moss explained, the state will be ready to act upon awaited adoption in November. According to an article by the Associated Press, Moss said in a statement:
“Temporary or initial licenses will be issued on the day of adoption to allow licensees to go live and offer wagers on sports according to law and rule.”
Director of Maine’s Gambling Control Unit, Milt Champion, and his agency published the proposed rules for gambling in January. They also published a second draft of regulations to govern sports betting in the state.
Four tribes receive exclusive rights to Maine online sports betting
Gov. Mills gave control of the online sports betting market to Native American tribes in Maine after scuttling their proposal for greater sovereignty last year.
Online sports betting in Maine is expected to account for 85% of the gambling market, providing a conduit for revenue for the tribes.
Each tribe can select its operator, which means there could be up to four licenses for the:
- Penobscot Nation
- Passamaquoddy tribes at Indian Township and Pleasant Point
- Houlton Band of Maliseets
Maine’s existing casinos – Hollywood Slots Hotel & Raceway (Bangor) and Oxford Casino (Oxford) – can each request licenses and partner with one commercial sportsbook brand.
Sports betting could generate over $3.8 million in revenue
Estimates project sports betting in Maine to generate between $3.8 million and $6.9 million in revenue for the state. Milt Champion said that’s on top of $64 million from casinos and other legal gambling in 2022.
Each tribe will have to pay a 10% tax on gaming revenue. A gambling license will cost $200,000 and requires renewal every four years. Retail casinos will have to pay $4,000 for a license.