Rhode Island General Assembly approves online sports betting

Rhode Island's online sports betting legislation is now before Governor Gina Raimondo for final approval after passing the House.

The House voted Tuesday in favour of the bill that would authorise mobile sports betting through the Twin River casinos in Lincoln and Tiverton.

S37A / H5241 enables the creation of a consumer sports betting app to access the sports betting offerings of the two venues from anywhere within the state of Rhode Island, subject to prior in-person registration at one of the venues. It secured Senate approval last month.

Rhode Island would receive the same 51 per cent tax on remote sports betting winnings as its does on in-person sports betting, one of the highest rates in the United States.

“This revenue, along with the revenue we anticipate from an expansion to mobile gaming is a tremendous benefit to the state,” said House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello. “It’s an added benefit that we can capture revenue that would have otherwise gone to an illegal market.

“When you consider that up to 97 percent of sports wagering is done illegally, it makes good sense for the state to increase its revenue by providing an entertainment that can be done safely and legally.”

The legislation takes effect upon passage.

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