Early this week, Arizona passed legislation that will allow players in the state to bet on professional sports. It’s expected that legal wagering will come to the Grand Canyon State by the end of 2021.
Final approval on Monday was given to the companion bills Senate Bill 1797 and House Bill 2772. The House version passed with a 23-6 vote.
Governor Doug Ducey is expected to sign the bill into law. As soon as legislation takes effect, he will sign amendments to the gaming compacts that Arizona has with local tribes. It’s expected that the tribal casinos will be allowed to expand and offer new types of games such as roulette, craps and baccarat. Currently, the state’s tribes only offer poker and blackjack.
The new sports betting bill also allows fantasy betting, while the Arizona Lottery will be allowed to introduce a new keno-style game.
Key Features of Arizona Sports Betting Legislation
- Ten tribes and ten professional sports teams will be allowed to apply for and acquire sports betting licenses.
- Mobile sports betting will be allowed.
- Off-reservation sportsbooks will also be allowed to offer sports betting within 5 blocks of their sports facilities.
- Collegiate bets, except proposition bets, will be allowed.
- Sportsbooks will pay an 8% tax rate on revenues to the state.
- It’s estimated that new gambling will bring in around $34 million in annual revenue.
Republican lawmaker and co-sponsor of the bill, Jeff Weninger explained how Arizonians will be able to place bets:
“Casinos will be able to allow sports wagering, and there will be 10 licenses outside of the casinos. The sports franchises will have those, along with NASCAR and the Phoenix Open. Fantasy sports kiosks, up to two allowed in limited places. That will be racetracks and fraternal clubs, that would be your VFW’s, American Legions … then there’s another component of the bill that allows keno. It’ll allow keno at racetracks, off-site betting places and at these fraternal clubs.”