Done Deal: Ohio Governor Signs Sports Betting Into Law

Written By Brad Allen on December 22, 2021
Ohio State mascot Brutus

Gov. Mike DeWine signed Ohio sports betting into law on Wednesday, paving the way for the market to launch sometime in 2022.

The governor gave his approval to the sports betting legislation passed by Ohio lawmakers earlier this month.

The signature was widely expected, with DeWine outspoken on his support for legal Ohio sportsbooks.

The Ohio Casino Control Commission must now draw up the regulations for the market.

“We want to get this up and running as soon as possible, but we’re building a whole new industry,” said Sen. Kirk Schuring, per the Cincinnati Enquirer. “We’re hoping it can be done sooner (than 2023.)”

Ohio sports betting is a big deal

Ohio’s sports betting market will be one of the country’s largest and could generate nearly $1 billion in gross gaming revenue.

Those revenues will be taxed at 10%, generating as much as $90 million in taxes for state coffers annually.

The state is also home to around 11.7 million people, along with nine major professional franchises and 13 colleges with NCAA Division I athletics.

For comparison, Pennsylvania (12.8 million residents) and Illinois (12.6 million residents) are currently the third and fourth largest sports betting markets in the US respectively.

How do you get an Ohio license?

Twenty five mobile sports licenses are up for grabs via pro teams, leagues, casinos and racinos.

Those entities will have one skin each, but can potentially offer another if they can prove an incremental economic benefit to the state.

Other key points for Ohio sports betting:

  • Official league data is not required for live betting.
  • Sports betting in Ohio must start by Jan. 1, 2023. It can start earlier on a date set by the regulator. Provisional gaming licenses can be awarded through June 30, 2023.
  • Operators can not carry forward negative revenue for tax purposes.
  • Betting on professional esports is allowed, but not on fixed odds horse racing.
Photo by The Associated Press
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Brad Allen

Brad has been covering the online gambling industry in Europe and the US for more than four years, most recently as the news editor at EGR Global.

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