Montana seems to be the next state where lawmakers are toying with the idea of introducing a new bill that would allow sports betting to kick off in earnest in the state. SB 330 predicts online, mobile and land-based gaming.
Montana Entertains the Idea of Legalizing Sports Betting
The Montana Sports Betting Act, known as SB 330 in legal circles, is now rearing its head, scheduled for a hearing today, March 19. The Senate Bill will appear at the Senate’s Business, Labor, and Economic Affairs Committee to try and stand scrutiny for introducing mobile, online and land-based sports betting in Montana.
Behind Montana Sports Betting Act
The bill invites businesses to set up their mobile and online operations in exchange for a state-approved license. Unlike other states, the proposed cost of Montana’s licenses is very low, at $1,000, with operators obliged to renew the license every year at $1,000.
Should the license fee be approved, along with the entire bill, this will be the lowest online sports betting fee across the entirety of the United States. Operators which successfully secure a license would also be allowed to team up with third-parties in order to roll out a full portfolio of products.
The proposed tax is also considerably low with only 8.5% on gross betting receipts going back to the state, giving significant advantage to business looking to expand in the state. Montana’s population, though is not the largest in the country, with 1.1 million people living there.
Work with Established Operators
Any business that wants to introduce sports betting will have to team up with an established gambling operator and pay 5% of the net sportsbook income in order to use the facilities. For each individual kiosk they open up on the premises of a gambling company, sports betting operators will have to pay $100 in annual fees.
Establishing links between already active casinos and new arrivals has been in the crux of most sports betting policies across the United States. Meanwhile, SB 330 also broaches important topics such as safe gambling practices and responsible advertising.
Montana is not alone in its ambitions to legalize the sports betting segment completely, with neighboring North and South Dakota also trying to decide whether legalizing sports betting would really be worth the trouble.
Legalization Won’t Hurt the State
Sports betting won’t have any downsides if applied well. Incidents of gambling addiction can be kept to a minimum with the help of proper supervision. Funding can also be requested from operators to ensure that people who fall victim to compulsive gaming are being taken care of, thus giving businesses an extra incentive to avoid taking wagers from players with erratic behavior.
The state stands to fetch decent windfall from the legalization of sports betting, especially when online betting will be immediately available. This can also help Montana claw some players from its still hesitant neighbors too.