New York Online Sports Betting is Finally Approved

By  //  April 12, 2021

It may seem like forever ago since the talk of legalizing online betting in the state of New York has started. New York already has legal sports betting at its commercial casino since 2013.

However, the first sportsbooks in the state only opened in July 2019.

New York is one of the states that moved towards legalizing or regulating sports betting after the Supreme Court of the United States repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act or PASPA of 1992.

However, even if sports betting is legal in New York, online sports betting is still not allowed. This means that sports punters can only place their bets at the physical casinos in Upstate New York. People can place bets with their mobile devices but only if they are within the premises of the casino.

On a federal level, online sports betting isn’t exactly illegal. It could be prohibited in a few states but Americans are not prohibited from placing their bets offshore on sites like 10CRIC the best sports betting site in India. New Yorkers would either place their bets offshore or in states where online betting is legal, like New Jersey.

New York’s Move to Regulate Online Betting

While legal in-person betting already exists in New York, there is still a push for online betting to be legal and when it comes to this, Senator Joseph Addabbo, Jr. is one of the spearheads. Senator Addabbo has proposed numerous sports betting bills over the years and he strongly believes that allowing online betting would give the state a significant percentage of the sports betting handle.

An example is how New Jersey would have around 80 to 90 percent of its sports betting handle from the online sector. “Mobile sports betting is benefiting New Jersey — with approximately 25% of the state’s mobile wagering business coming from New York residents — and it could provide the same positive results for New York,” Addabbo said.

From the start, it seemed like New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has opposed the regulations of online betting. Based on his statements back then, he simply found doing this unconstitutional. However, things have already changed and Cuomo seems to now be welcoming of it. This is especially now that the state needs more tax revenues. New York was hit hard by the pandemic and is still recovering. The state has a huge budget deficit and while online betting shouldn’t be the only solution, it could still help.

Recently, the state has announced that the budget for the fiscal year 2022 is already approved and it includes the budget for legal online wagering for the first time. According to Cuomo, he wants to run the state’s sports betting industry to the New York State Lottery.

Cuomo talked about his plan in January and said, “We want to do sports betting the way the state runs the lottery where the state gets the revenues. Many states have done sports betting but they allow casinos to run their gambling operations. That makes a lot of money for casinos but it makes minimal money for the state.

“And I’m not here to make casinos a lot of money. I’m here to raise funds for the state. [And] so, we have a different model for sports betting.”

Under Cuomo’s plan, the New York Lottery would issue requests for proposals from two mobile betting operators. These operators would then subcontract out licenses to up to four sportsbook operators. Based on reports, this model will benefit the four upstate casinos and their sportsbook partners which are DraftKings, FanDuel, BetRIvers, and Bet365.

Regarding the Budget Legislation

The budget legislation will exclude in-stadium betting kiosks at the Yankee Stadium, Madison Square Garden, and other major New York sports venues. Cuomo also promised that the state’s three gaming tribes will also be included in online sports betting. However, no further details were revealed.

Still, the announcement of the budget was quite a blow to the Democratic lawmakers who wanted to have a competitive betting model. It is quite an issue that Cuomo’s model still won despite the political scandals and possible investigations.

Senator Addabbo said that the current sports betting model could still change early next year if expectations aren’t met. This means that further discussion will continue to happen until online betting is launched in the states. For now, however, specific details are still speculative.

“We hope everyone in our state who has been spending money in New Jersey or Pennsylvania or perhaps illegally will try us and stay with us,” commented Addabbo when it comes to online sports betting legislation.