- Legal States
Silvia Pavlof December 9, 2022 3 min read
Massachusetts Gaming Commission Unable to Decide on Sports Betting Bids
For the second day in a row, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, which is responsible for regulating the gambling industry in the state, cannot make a decision on a sports betting application.
Commissioners Postpone Decision on MGM Springfield
The Boston Herald reported that on December 7, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission held a meeting to review the second out of three applications for casino-based sports wagering venues. The five members of the regulator had to consider an application filed by MGM Springfield.
After five hours of discussions, the Commission concluded that there was a discrepancy with the documentation. It turned out that the whole application makes various references to BetMGM, which is the chosen partner of MGM Springfield.
As a result, the five commissioners decided to wait until the scheduled presentation that BetMGM is going to hold the following week in order to be able to provide a resolution.
MGM Springfield has applied for a license of Category 1. This means that the company is going to operate a land-based gambling venue and it will have a partner that offers mobile gambling.
That partner is BetMGM and the two applications are so interconnected and dependent on each other that it was impossible for the Commission to take a stand on MGM Springfield’s bid without first reviewing the application submitted by BetMGM.
The BetMGM review is scheduled for next week. What can be deducted from the current situation it will be either a pass for both companies or both will be denied a license.
The Commission Also Delayed Its Decision on Plainridge Park Casino
At their previous meeting held on December 6, the five commissioners were also unable to make a decision on the application filed by Plainridge Park Casino.
The reason behind the commissioners’ indecisiveness was that there were serious concerns about the affiliate sports book, Penn Entertainment, that the casino had chosen as a partner.
The issue was that Penn Entertainment has a connection to Barstool Sports and Dave Portnoy who is both the spokesperson and founder of Barstool.
The commissioners’ concerns were in connection with Portnoy’s significant appeal to younger audiences. They are afraid that his strong presence and personality may attract younger audiences and may in general lead to irresponsible gambling.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has delayed its decision on the bid from Plainridge Park Casino until the casino together with its affiliated sportsbook partner Penn Entertainment can prove that Portnoy will not have the negative effects on the casino patrons the Commission is concerned about.