Limited betting on in-state college sports could soon be legalized in Illinois after a two-year trial bill has been filed in the General Assembly on the last scheduled day of the legislative session.
Sponsored by Blue Island Rep. Bob Rita, the omnibus sports bill could pass both chambers before they adjourn on Monday after passing a committee on Monday afternoon.
In Person Illinois Sports Betting
Persons who want to make in-state college sports bets in Illinois must go to a brick and mortar sportsbook instead of an online one. A bet on an Illinois college team must be a Tier 1 wager, meaning it is solely determined by the final outcome of a sporting event. It must also be placed before the start of the game.
The new Illinois sports betting bill also permits the Wintrust Arena, home of the WNBA’s Chicago Sky, to become a spots betting venue. The initial fee for the Wintrust Arena would be $10M or 5% of gross receipts, whichever is lower. The license could be renewed in four years at a fee of $1M.
If the bill is passed by the lawmakers ang signed by the Governor, it will immediately take effect. The provision would run through July 1,2023 and betting on individual performances is not legal.
Video Gaming Provisions
The Illinois college sports betting bill also increased the cap for the annual fee that non-home rule municipalities charge on video game terminals from $25 to $250. The $250 fee would apply to home municipalities too although lawmakers intend to include a provision that allows the municipalities who charge more to continue to do so.
Under the measure, municipalities are also prevented from taxing video gambling machines or the bets placed on those machines. If municipalities have already levied such taxes on video game gambling on June 1st, they may continue to charge it but cannot increase, expand, or extend the tax rate on persons playing video game terminals.
Fraternal organizations such as VFW posts and American Legions are also allowed to apply for gambling machine licenses even if their municipalities have a local ban on them. The Illinois sports betting bill also allows fraternal facilities without liquor licenses to apply. However, the foregoing provisions shall not apply to Chicago and Cook County facilities.