Will ‘Mississippi Mobile’ Become Real For Sportsbooks?

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Mississippi sportsbooks

It’s a new year, which means there will be another push to legalize fully mobile Mississippi sportsbooks. But will they finally pass?

Rep. Cedric Burnett filed HB 184, which should sound familiar to anyone watching Mississippi sports betting since its retail launch in 2018. Burnett’s latest bill is similar to his attempts in 2019 and 2020, as it gives any licensed casino in the state the right to launch a mobile sportsbook.

Currently, mobile betting apps are geofenced to the casino itself, meaning bettors must be on property to bet with their phones.

What is unclear is if this is the mobile sports betting bill Rep. Casey Eure has in mind. Eure, chairman of the House Gaming Committee, told a local outlet the committee is working on legislation of its own for mobile betting.

Burnett is a member of the Gaming Committee. Neither Burnett nor Eure responded to LSR requests for comment by publication.

Details for mobile Mississippi sportsbooks

All of the state’s 26 commercial casinos have retail sportsbooks, which means all could launch online as well.

That does not mean there would be 26 different brands, of course. For example, the multiple Caesars-owned casinos in the state would use the Caesars Sportsbook app.

Since there are no new licenses created, it means market-access deals like the one signed last year between Penn National and PointsBet would be moot.

Monthly sports betting revenue would be taxed on a sliding scale:

The bill also legalizes betting on esports.

Could nearby changes force legislature’s hand?

The appetite to legalize fully mobile Mississippi sportsbooks has been about zero so far. Action in a couple of border states might change that though.

Right now, only Tennessee to the north of Mississippi allows online betting. Soon, though, mobile Louisiana sportsbooks are expected to launch after the retail launch in October.

Meanwhile, the Arkansas Racing Committee approved a rule change to allow statewide mobile last week. The change that legalizes online AR sports betting needs to be approved by a legislative subcommittee, but a committee spokesperson told local media that apps could be running early this year.