It seems that online sports betting will come to Tennessee as the House of Representatives passed a piece of legislation recently that will legalize this type of activity on the web. Tennessee could become one of the few states that gave two thumbs up to betting on sports online.
The Tennessean newspaper published a report stating that a body consisting of 99 seats approved House Bill 1. 58 voted in favor while 37 opposed the bill, with some of the opposers being pretty loud in their protest against it. According to them, legalizing online sports betting could pave the way to a big increase in gambling addiction.
The legislation regarding online sports betting was written by a Democratic Representative in Tennesse, Rick Staples. It will be sent to the Tennessee State Senate, and if they pass the bill, we could witness online sports betting in Tennessee very soon. The legislative piece was also approved by the Finance Committee, which consists of 33 members. Finally, the Governor of Tennesse, Bill Lee, will have to say his words in the end and put a signature so that everything can be set into motion.
According to Staples, Tennessee is in a unique position right now and it has huge potential to generate revenue from online sports betting. Namely, Staples argues that all the neighboring countries, including Kentucky, Alabama, Georgia, and Arkansas do not allow this type of activity, which means that many people would visit Tennessee to enjoy activities such as sports betting. Furthermore, he added that sports betting operators would use cutting-edge geo-location technology which will allow aficionados from the neighboring states to enter the so-called ‘Volunteer State’ and be able to place wagers.
According to The Tennessean, if House Bill 1 is ratified, it would allow everyone who is located in the state of Tennessee to take part in legal online betting on sports. The only boundary would be that they are of minimum gambling age which is 21 ins this southern state. Punters will have an opportunity to place wagers on both professional and collegiate sports.
On the other hand, the bill doesn’t include land-based sports betting facilities. In other words, everyone who wants to place bets will have to do that exclusively at online platforms. Furthermore, the bill suggests that $50 million in tax revenues will have to be allocated to the local government, gambling addiction programs, and education.
Furthermore, there are a couple of prohibitions that will take place if this legislative piece becomes active, and it is mainly aimed towards prohibited punters. People who are registered as athletes, referees or team owners will be strictly forbidden to partake in online sports betting as it is believed they could compromise the integrity of sports and entier leagues.
House Bill 1 was introduced as a consequence of the invalidation of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in May last year. This act was largely responsible for the fact that sports betting was largely unavailable in the US for the past two decades. In fact, only Nevada offered sports betting services before PASPA was invalidated. However, some states were ready and welcomed this decision made by the United States Supreme Court. At the moment, sports betting services are available (or being actively discussed) in Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Mississippi, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New Mexico. Furthermore, 31 additional states are currently considering this option and its advantages and disadvantages. States such as Iowa, Washington, and Indiana are some of the states that are very likely to make the first step soon.