Deadwood Sports Betting Bill Passes State Senate

The South Dakota Senate passed SB 44 by a 32-2 vote on Tuesday, February 9. It now heads to the state house. A two-thirds majority is required to pass the bill. 

The bill would permit sportsbooks and betting kiosks within the city limits of Deadwood. This would also permit tribal casinos in the state to accept wagers on sports.

The South Dakota sports betting bill SB 44 only allows for wagers to be made on the premises of a licensed gaming operator in Deadwood. Mobile betting is not permitted under SB 44.

Mobile betting is often a majority of total sports handle

Most states with legal sports betting, including nearby Colorado and Iowa, have legal mobile sports betting. This allows players to make wagers on a phone or similar electronic device. Accounts may be created on an app, which also processes deposits and withdrawals. South Dakota sports bettors near the Iowa border are familiar with how easy this process is. 

Mobile is more than half of all sports betting revenues in states where it is legal. This feature is reportedly opposed by the South Dakota governor. The lack of mobile betting may make it unprofitable for operators to turn a profit off an investment in sportsbooks.  

The annual licensing fee is $2,000. There is also a nine percent tax on gross gaming revenues.

No betting permitted on some amateur events

There are some betting exclusions in the bill. It includes a ban on betting on college sports if a team is located in South Dakota. Prop betting on individual college player performances is not permitted. High school and minor league betting would also not be permitted under SB 44.

Deadwood Gaming Association supports SB 44

Mike Rodman, executive director of the Deadwood Gaming Association, was on the Nate Brown Show on February 10. It is airs on Fox Sports Rapid City.

Rodman told Brown that he thinks Deadwood could have sports betting live by the end of the summer if the bill passes the state house and is signed by the governor. The bill allows for it to begin on July 1. However, there may not be enough time to have it live by then.

The Deadwood Gaming Association hoped to get mobile sports betting in 2021. Opposition to it by the governor and anti-gambling legislators likely makes mobile betting impossible at this time. 

HB 1231 is the bill that would permit mobile sports betting in South Dakota. It was referred to the House Taxation Committee. It has not had a hearing. Rodman believes the bill is dead. 

Without mobile legislation, some Deadwood casinos would still accept wagers with the hope that the legislature will revisit the issue in 2022 to make the action more profitable once it has been demonstrated that it was regulated properly. 

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