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Vermont lawmaker introduces online sports betting bill

Vermont gambling news

Vermont Rep. Matthew Birong (D-Addison 3) recently introduced a bill to legalize online sports betting in the state.

BILL H127, which does not cover in-person wagering, expects online betting to generate up to $10 million annually for the state, revenue which will then be used to fund high-priority issues like education, prevention and treatment of problem gambling and so on. 

The 2022 Sports Betting Committee evaluated the impact of sports betting on Vermont and concluded the state “will be best served by legalizing sports wagering”, although with conditions attached. Their decision is further aided by their discovery of the fact that residents of Vermont are already involved in illegal sports betting.

READ: Online gambling laws in Vermont

One of the recommendations of the nine-member group is for Vermont to adopt a similar strategy to New York, where operators are selected through a competitive bidding process. It recommended Vermont’s Department of Liquor and Lottery (DLL) as controller of the sports betting program. 

In light of these recommendations, H127 is proposing a minimum of two online sports betting licensees and a maximum of six. Operators will be chosen by merit of their proposals submitted to the DLL, which must contain the proposed tax rate they are willing to pay for operating in the state and an estimate of their potential gross gaming revenue, amongst other required information. Each license awarded carries an annual fee of $275,000.

The bill notes that while wagering on collegiate sporting events is legal, it ceases to be so once one of the teams is from an institution based in Vermont. 

There is hope of the bill succeeding as Governor Phil Scott has indicated his support already. 

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