Missouri Senator Calls for Quicker Action on Sports Betting

Missouri State Senator Denny Hoskins has urged Missourians and lawmakers to rally behind sports betting legalization in a bid to put a stop to tax revenue bleeding across the state border.

The Time to Legalize Sports Betting Now, Says Sen. Hoskins

Missouri State Senator Denny Hoskins, R-Warrensburg, is bringing up a new piece of legislation – Senate Bill 18 – hoping to push for a legalized sports betting industry on the state’s 13 licensed riverboat casinos before long.

Discussing the bill, Hoskins said the riverboat casinos will be allowed to accept wagers on professional sports, as well as some collegiate sports, giving a legalized industry the teeth to stem capital outflow to offshore markets and neighboring states.

Hoskins said that consumers would have the opportunity to bet on college teams as well as place a wager on any big competitive event in or outside the state. Fleshing out the details, Hoskins added that he believed Missouri stands to benefit from as much as $37 million up to $50 million in new tax revenue.

The senator’s projections seem reasonable, albeit when most states began regulating the industry, lawmakers mistook betting handle as the taxable amount, whereas the actual levy applies to gross sports betting revenue, collected after paying back winners.

Missouri Has No Time to Lose, Only Revenue

Hoskins explained that the number of states to now authorize sports betting, following the U.S. Presidential election race in November when voters approved a regulation in six new states.

While Missouri hesitates whether to embrace sports betting and legalize the industry, Hoskins cautioned, residents continue to drive up to Iowa and bleed the state out of revenue that could be going into its own coffers.

Many Missourians are actually traveling to Las Vegas to bet on sports, Hoskins said, adding: “I most certainly don’t want to raise taxes, but I would like to see the tax income from this new revenue stream) come to the state of Missouri.”

Back in December 2019, the Missouri House Special Interim Committee on Gaming revealed a 15-page report that revealed that the state needs to act quickly or face revenue loss due to lack of a legal sports betting framework.

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