Legal sports betting in Louisiana missed the start of football season but it might not be that far behind according to recent comments.
Hurricane Ida slightly slowed the process down since the Louisiana State Police also regulate the state’s gaming industry with the Louisiana Gaming Control Board.
The state police are back in the office full time now and are working on eight applications for Louisiana sportsbooks right now, Mjr. Chuck McNeal said. LGCB Chairman Ronnie Johns did not provide specifics but made it sound like a launch could be coming shortly:
“I know Major McNeal and his entire staff is working overtime to get this up and running and hopefully we’re going to have some good news very soon.”
Johns said last month he believes the market can launch in time for betting on the NFL this year.
Louisiana sports betting nearly ready
The legislation that legalized LA sports betting crafted a solid roadmap to get the market launched quickly.
The emergency rules passed at last month’s meeting will let sportsbooks launch on temporary certificates of authority approved by the LGCB. That means the lengthy licensing process can be completed after an operator is already live.
The LGCB approved the permanent rules that will replace those emergency rules at Thursday’s meeting. Those will likely be published in January’s state register barring major changes, Assistant Attorney General Dawn Himel said.
The legislation allows for the state’s 20 land-based and riverboat casinos to offer two skins apiece. Since those casinos are already licensed, the state police are mostly checking to make sure no information changed. McNeal said.
Implementing internal controls is the longest part of the process at this point, he added.
Eventual Louisiana bettors patiently waiting
The wait is nearly over for legal Louisiana sports betting.
That wait officially began last November when 55 of 64 parishes voted to legalize betting in said parish.
Voters had every right to wonder when legislators would get around to approving a framework, though. Daily fantasy sports launched in July with DraftKings after 47 parishes approved the contests in 2018.