House Vote Approves Bill to Legalize Mobile Sports Betting in North Carolina

House Vote Approves Bill to Legalize Mobile Sports Betting in North Carolina

North Carolina sports betting

On March 28, the House voted 66-45 in favor of legalization, a significant shift from a year ago, when a similar measure failed by a single vote.

WRAL News reported that North Carolina legislators have approved a bill to legalize mobile sports wagering, allowing individuals to wager on professional and collegiate sports using electronic devices. On March 29, a final vote is anticipated; if passed, the measure will be sent to the Senate, which has already passed similar legislation.

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HB 347 authorizes licensing for ten to twelve mobile operators to accept wagers from North Carolina residents. It authorizes wagering on professional, college, electronic, and Olympic-style sports and taxes the operators’ adjusted gross revenue at 14%, with the funds going to a variety of purposes, such as athletic departments at public colleges and a new fund to attract major sporting events to the state.

North Carolina had already legalized sports wagering, but it was limited to wagers placed in person at tribal casinos. The new legislation would extend the market to include mobile devices, making them more accessible to state residents.

Since a 2018 US Supreme Court ruling that gave states the authority to legalize such wagering, more than two dozen states have legalized mobile sports betting. Proponents, including professional sports teams and facilities in North Carolina, have cited a loss of revenue from gamblers using out-of-state or offshore accounts.

The latest version of the bill, which was modified Tuesday morning before the House rules committee, does not include parimutuel wagering on horse or dog races, moves the start date to January 8, 2024, and increases funding for athletic departments at the 10 UNC System schools that do not compete at the Football Bowl Subdivision level.

North Carolina has legalized mobile sports betting 

Some lawmakers remain opposed to the measure despite its passage, citing potential social ills and a significant increase in problem gambling. Others have argued that the state should not sanction more gambling and that millions of dollars in revenue do not justify expanding gambling in a state with a budget of $29.7 billion.

Critics have also raised concerns regarding the operators’ advertising and the likelihood that it will be pervasive, attracting the attention of minors and luring problem gamblers onto apps. However, the bill swiftly passed through four House committees in the past week, and its supporters defeated a number of proposed amendments to alter or weaken the bill.

If passed, the measure must still be approved by the Senate and signed by Governor Roy Cooper, who has indicated his support and included sports betting revenue in his most recent two-year budget. Overall, the passage of this measure would significantly alter the gambling landscape in North Carolina and could provide a substantial economic boost to the state.


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.