“At the end of the day the people of Ohio wanted it, they wanted it since 2018 when the Supreme Court ruled states can in fact legalize sports betting and that’s what this bill would do,” he said.
The Casino Control Commission would have until January 2022 to issue the licenses, and people will find out where they can bet and what apps they can bet on, Antani said. He said that he has heard from residents who didn’t want to expand gambling in the state, but pointed to the possibility of out-of-state billionaires coming into Ohio and running a ballot initiative and creating a monopoly.
“That’s why we have to do it in a very safe and regulated approach which is what this bill does,” Antani said.
The goal right now is to get the law passed before the statehouse recess for the summer, he said.
The bill also would authorize the Ohio Lottery Commission to run sports pools for people to wager on the outcome of games or a series of games. Bettors would pay $20 to enter a pool with the money divided equally among winners minus the commission’s 10% take.
The proposed legislation would allow Ohioans to bet on collegiate sports, but the Ohio Casino Control Commission would decide which teams are eligible and how that’s enforced. The Inter-University Council of Ohio, which represents the state’s 14 public universities, had asked lawmakers to exempt collegiate sports from gambling in Ohio. Under the proposals, no bets could be placed on K-12 sports.
The Associated Press contributed to this story