ANNAPOLIS, Md. – On Friday, the Maryland Sports Wagering Application Review Commission (SWARC) allowed people to share opinions on the Maryland sports betting regulations. This isn’t the only public comments, as SWARC may receive comments through writing.
Still, this quick hearing changed the launch timeline of legal Maryland sports betting. Weeks ago, estimates put an online MD sportsbook launch in early 2023. Now, it is back to the end of 2022. All this is still two years removed from Governor Larry Hogan signing the MD sports betting bill.
The main comments came from Arthur Robinson, Full Circle Solutions’ CEO.
Robinson believed that issues were present from application fees and some language.
At current, SWARC receives $500,000 per sports betting application. This is regardless of the approval status. Robinson though this should be refundable if the sportsbook does not receive approval.
Diversity Back On
Robinson also explained his position on minority and women-owned investors. This was a rule per the MD sports betting bill.
In July, SWARC moved forward without analysis on how this would all work out. But, it never left the table.
Last week, SWARC approved their Diversity Plan amendment unanimously. This requires sportsbooks to file a plan covering their objectives in this field. This ranges to a few points:
Ways to attract a diverse owner group.
Achieve specific goals in relation to diversity.
Hold “diversity-related events”
Still, Robinson pointed out that the current regulations speak of an “effort” to get this going.
“The language ‘if applicable in efforts’ doesn’t seem to make it a requirement.”
Is A 2022 Launch Possible?
There are still a few steps required before legal online sports betting in Maryland can launch.
Applicants have until Oct. 21 at 5 p.m. to file. Then, SWARC has no more than 45 days to approve or deny the application, awarding licenses.
According to the Maryland Lottery (MLG), approved licenses are coming within 3 months.
James Butler, the Assistant Deputy Director of MLG, stated this deadline is firm. As for the regulations, they will be in place until they are final… or until March 3, 2023, whichever is first.
With a December 5 marker, this means Maryland online sportsbooks could be live by 2022.
Maryland sportsbooks tallied almost $20 million in bets accepted during August. Add in online sports betting and the NFL betting season, and this could be closer to $500 million per month.
News tags: Arthur Robinson | Full Circle Solutions | James Butler | Larry Hogan | Maryland | Maryland Lottery And Gaming | Sports Wagering Application Review Commission
Michael began writing as an NBA content writer and has spent time scouting college basketball for Florida State University under Leonard Hamilton and the University of Alabama under Anthony Grant. A graduate of both schools, he covers topics focused on legal sports betting bills, sports betting revenue data, tennis betting odds, and sportsbook reviews. Michael likes to play basketball, hike, and kayak when not glued to the TV watching midlevel tennis matches.