Sports Betting in Hawaii: Bill to Legalize Gambling Proposed 

Sports Betting in Hawaii: Bill to Legalize Gambling Proposed 

Hawaii Sports Betting

The Hawaii State Legislature is now debating a number of proposals that pertain to the potential legalization of gambling in the state.

According to a recent article published by the Hawaii Tribune-Herald, Hawaii is one of only two states in the United States that has not yet legalized any form of commercial gambling. The other state is Utah.

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Bills Propose Poker and Sportsbook Establishment in Oahu, Hawaii

One of the measures, House Bill 918, includes a provision that would provide a single “poker and sportsbook gambling establishment” on the island of Oahu a license valid for a period of ten years.

Individuals over the age of 21 who have registered to stay at a hotel and paid an annual fee would be the only people who would be permitted entrance to the facility.

The bill, which was introduced by Representatives John Mizuno and Daniel Holt, both Democrats from Oahu, would also establish a Hawaii Gaming Control Commission and a state gaming fund.

Additionally, it would implement a tax on gross receipts and a program for treating gambling addiction. The bill was introduced by Representatives John Mizuno and Daniel Holt. There are two measures relating to sports betting and two pieces of legislation relating to online fantasy sports that are among the four additional bills that are now being considered.

Both Senate Bill 1109 and House Bill 344 would put the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism in charge of regulating wagering on sporting events. The proposals would state that sports betting is not considered a game of chance or gambling and would establish licensing procedures for sports betting operators and suppliers.

Related Article: Bill Allowing Maryland Casino Owners to Finance Politicians Proposed 

Online fantasy sports competitions are addressed by two additional pieces of Senate legislation, namely SB 1108 and SB 1146. They would exclude these competitions from the state’s gaming regulations in exchange for the establishment of a registration program for them. Also, one of these proposals would put a tax on all the money won in online fantasy sports competitions. The money from this tax would be used to fix up public schools and county roads.

In addition, Senate Bill 1107 intends to create the Hawaii Lottery and Gaming Corporation for the purpose of operating and regulating wagering and gaming within the state. This was included as an additional goal of the bill. This law would also establish a special fund and distribute a percentage of the revenues from that fund to a variety of activities aimed at improving the community.

In addition, a number of anti-gambling measures are currently under consideration. These include two companion bills that, if passed, would make the operation of an illegal gambling business a Class C felony, carrying a potential sentence of up to five years in prison. Other proposed legislation would make it a crime to possess large gaming equipment and would create a task force comprised of representatives from various levels of government to combat illegal drug use and gambling.

Getting Rid of Illegal Gambling

The 7,000 places in Hawaii where people can gamble illegally are the target of these programs, which aim to close them down.

 Finally, Senator Stanley Chang has proposed Senate Bill 935, which would prohibit hotels and resorts in Nevada from advertising gambling and impose a tax of thirty percent on the gross income earned by individuals in Hawaii who arrange or sell vacation packages that include gambling activities. This bill is part of a package that would also ban advertisements by hotels and resorts in other states that promote gambling.

The bill uses an estimate from 2011 that says Boyd Gaming, a company in Nevada, made $600 million from Hawaii gamblers. It also says that Hawaii loses $1 billion every year because of its gamblers because gambling is illegal there.

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About Lou De Aguila

Lou Aguila is a news and feature writer for Golden Casino News. For over a decade, Lou has published news and featured articles for some of the most reputable sports betting and online casino sites in the world, including BetNow.UK, VegasOdds, and BWin. Apart from being a hardcore live casino punter, he also covers sports stories in North American leagues from time to time.