South Dakota Gaming Regulators Are Molding the Sports Gambling Market

South Dakota residents showed that they weren’t opposed to legalized sports gambling in the state in November of last year. Since then, lawmakers and gaming regulators have been doing their part to help put the activity into place. With a projected start date of July 1, there isn’t much time left, but the final touches of the state’s sports gambling market might now be in place. The South Dakota Commission on Gaming held a public hearing yesterday and addressed many of the proposed rules, ultimately approving them unanimously.

Sports Gambling Headed to Deadwood

When South Dakota first began exploring how to frame its sports gambling market after voters signed off on the idea, there was talk about allowing sportsbooks almost everywhere. However, that was dismissed and what ultimately emerged was in-person wagering in the gambling city of Deadwood. According to the minutes of the meeting (in pdf) from yesterday, the Commission has finalized the guidelines related to application fees, who is eligible for a license, and more. They also addressed other non-sports regulations, such as rules pertaining to blackjack, poker, and other casino games. All of the updates were accepted.

The application fee for a sports gambling license will cost $5,000 – much lower than what operators pay in other states. Anyone tied to the market, including equipment licensees and service providers, will be prohibited from placing bets on any sports event. There was also a change to how adjusted gross revenue was calculated; however, no details are available yet on exactly what was altered. Most importantly, an update was approved that allows sports gambling to be offered at Deadwood’s casinos.

Applications Accepted Starting Tomorrow

With all of these rules now approved, and only a few other issues still needing to be addressed, it’s time for South Dakota to get its market in place. The next step is to open up the window for applications, which is about to happen. The Commission will reportedly make license applications available through its website starting tomorrow and it’s likely that the site is going to be inundated with traffic. The Commission hasn’t stated how long it will keep the window open.

South Dakota expects to be able to launch its sports gambling market on July 1, but the date remains flexible. Although the state may have missed a great opportunity by not authorizing mobile sportsbooks, it is still ready to be included in a group of legal gambling states that now has almost 30 members. Previous projections had expected there to be 40 legal states by 2024, but that number might be reached much sooner.

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