maryland online sports betting
Apr 8, 2021; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Members of the field crew prepare the field before the game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Boston Red Sox at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Robert Linnehan

The Maryland Senate today advanced a sports betting bill with amendments that will see an unlimited number of potential mobile sports betting licenses. According to the bill, the mobile sports betting licenses will not need to be partnered with a brick-and-mortar casino.

The Senate must give its final approval and the House must agree to pass the bill before Gov. Larry Hogan (R) can sign it into law. The state’s 2021 legislative session is set to adjourn “sine die” on Monday, April 12.

The Maryland Budget and Taxation Committee yesterday unanimously voted to move an amended sports betting bill to the Senate for discussion.

The bill will allow for several varieties of in-person and online sports betting for Maryland casinos and mobile sportsbook platforms. The original bill was sponsored by Democratic House Speaker Adrienne Jones and was approved by the House.

Maryland Online Sports Betting Could Have Plenty of Options

The committee amended Maryland House Bill 940 to expand the classifications of sportsbook licenses from two to four. The original bill allowed for a Class A and Class B license, which has now been expanded to Class A-1, Class A-2, Class B-1 and Class B-2 licenses.

The number of mobile sports betting licenses would be uncapped in the state. Unlike New York’s online sports betting plan, providers would not have to be partnered with an existing brick-and-mortar casino. Application fees for a mobile sports betting license would cost an initial $500,000 and $100,000 in renewal fees.

A proposed Class A-1 license would include the largest casinos, professional sports facilities and horse track licensees. A proposed Class A-2 license would include casinos with fewer than 1,000 slot machines; a proposed Class B-1 would include organizations with more than 25 employees and a class B-2 license would include organizations with fewer than 25 employees and less than $3 million in gross receipts.

Maryland Online Sports Betting Operator Costs

A Class A-1 license would cost $2 million to acquire and $500,000 in renewals; A Class A-2 license would cost $1 million to acquire and $300,000 to renew; A class B-1 license would cost $250,000 to acquire and $50,000 to renew; A class B-2 license would cost $50,000 and $10,000 in renewals.

A fund supporting minority and women-owned small businesses would receive 5% of gross gaming revenues from the Class A-1 and A-2 licenses.

Maryland voters approved a sports betting referendum in November by a 2-1 margin.

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