September Launch Looks Sure For Wyoming Sports Betting Market

Posted on August 3, 2021
Wyoming sports betting
Posted By on August 3, 2021

The Wyoming Gaming Commission adopted a final set of Wyoming sports betting rules Monday.

The commission finished its Wyoming sportsbook rules draft in June before sending it to a 45-day public comment period. That period ended Saturday and the rules were adopted with both emergency and regular status.

The set of rules is the same. WGC Executive Director Charles Moore said the emergency rules, which expire after 120 days, help relieve some pressure on the governor’s office and legislative branch to finish the final rules on-time.

Legislators desired a Sept. 1 launch for the mobile sports betting market this spring and Monday’s approval keeps that target in sight. Despite some initial hesitancy, Moore agreed to the quick timeline during the legislative process.

Wyoming sports betting licensing process

There are unlimited mobile licenses available. However, the population of fewer than 600,000 likely will limit the number of operators interested in the market. The commission will award a minimum of five licenses if there are enough qualified applicants.

The WGC opened the license application process July 15. During a July 9 meeting, Moore said the commission received four letters of intent to enter the market:

SuperBook USA and Golden Entertainment also took part in stakeholder meetings.

Wyoming rules basics

Moore said the Wyoming sports betting rules are based on a variety of other legal markets, including Colorado, Tennessee, Michigan and Iowa. Tennessee is the other mobile-only market in US sports betting.

With a framework based on existing rules, changes during the draft process were often minimal.

Operators will pay:

  • $100,000 for an initial five-year permit
  • $50,000 renewal fee
  • 10% tax on sports betting revenue

How did it happen?

Wyoming sports betting did not look as though it would pass early in the legislative session. After initially failing in the House, it passed a reconsideration vote, 32-4.

The Senate passed it, 24-5, on March 29. Gov. Mark Gordon signed the legislation into law April 5 with an emergency declaration to push the process forward.

Despite the lowest population of any state, early WGC estimates suggest the state can generate up to $450 million in annual wagers.

Nearby sportsbooks to Wyoming

While the commercial market in Wyoming will be online-only, the Northern Arapaho Tribe previously announced plans to launch sports betting at its tribal casinos. Tribes can offer any form of commercial gaming available in a given state.

To the south, Colorado sports betting has been live since May 2020. To the east, legislators this year approved retail betting in Nebraska and Deadwood, South Dakota.

In Montana, there is mobile sports betting through the Montana Lottery.

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Pat Evans

Pat Evans is a Las Vegas-based reporter covering sports business. Evans previously worked at Front Office Sports and the Grand Rapids Business Journal. He has authored two books: Grand Rapids Beer and Nevada Beer.

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