Voters in Colorado have voted in favor of legalizing sports betting in the state, making it the 19th state in the US to regulate sports betting in the country. Though Proposition DD passed with a razor-thin margin, Colorado residents should be able to participate in their own statewide sports wager markets by the first half of 2020.
The road to the resolution
The sports betting legalization vote was held this Tuesday for the residents. In the beginning, it looked clear that the support for an against the motion is nearly equivalent, but it would eventually be defeated by a narrow margin. During the vote count, a dramatic shift in votes favored legalization. The vote’s event went to a 50-50 tie at some point during the counting, but on Wednesday morning the supporters of legalization took a 1% lead.
The local media reported that the voters have decided in favor of Proposition DD. Most of its support came from areas like Denver, Arapahoe, Douglas, Adams, and Jefferson where voter turnouts were the highest though the results will officially be announced on November 27, more than 40,000 votes out of 1.5 million supported legalizations.
What happens next?
Now that the residents have decided in favor of a legal sports wagering market, the Colorado Division of Gaming will have to work towards creating new infrastructure in the state. It would be including outlining new licensing processes and regulations for the industry. The sports betting measure will allow for 17 casino operators to apply for licenses. They can operate either retail or digital sportsbooks. It will tax the revenue of these firms at 10% of the net proceeds.
The state will use its sports wagering taxes for financing its water management plans. The initiative with a huge environmental impact demands at least $40 billion to operate. Some revenue will also be decided to the gaming regulator, local governments and the state’s efforts to push responsible gambling measures.
The state will only allow casino operators to hold sports betting licenses, which means that more experienced companies like DraftKings and FanDuel will enter the market via partnerships. Colorado’s gambling industry is robust as compared to a few other states, and with the additions of sports wagering, it will only grow stronger. With one more state entering the market, states sitting on the fence and its neighboring states will now be startled. It would be profitable for them to start sports wagering right now or risk losing valuable revenue to Colorado.