Legal Sports Betting
Washington State is leading the Nation in Sports Betting, and they do not plan to slow down anytime soon. In 2021, Washington State legalized sports betting by uniting the body of institutions that operate throughout the state. Now, there are fifty members of the American Sports Betting Association. Washington is home to many professional sports bettors and it is one of the fastest growing sports betting states. In fact, Washington State legalized sports betting in its entirety, but it will take some time before all fifty states join the association.
Today, Washington State legalized sports betting by non-residents. In early 2021, the House and Senate passed a bill, ESHB 2537, that Governor Jay Inslee signed into law. The law ensures that any local tribal casino can provide online sports betting at their facility. This new policy allows Washington State residents to bet on sports for wagering purposes with other individuals or organizations that are resident within the state.
Some Washington State cities like Spokane, Seattle, and Bellingham are now the only local tribes permitted to conduct legal sports betting. Although there are still other local tribes that have yet to announce their intentions regarding expanded online sports betting, it appears that more local tribes will join the association in the near future. Within the next few months, additional local tribes will be announcing their intention to join the association.
If you live in or near Washington State and enjoy wagering on off-track sports betting, now is definitely the time to act. Washington State is presently without an out-of-state bookmaker; therefore, all wagering must occur within the state. This means that for the foreseeable future, a person wishing to place a bet on horse racing, lacrosse, or football in the state of Washington will need to conduct all of his or her gambling games within the state.
At present, twenty-nine states plus the District of Columbia already allow sports betting by electronic means. Unfortunately, twenty-one states still prohibit the practice altogether; therefore, Washington State is going to be one of the few exceptions. Hopefully, when the legalization of sports betting is legalized in the state of Washington, then all wagering will transpire within the state.
Unfortunately for Washington State residents who enjoy betting on other people’s sports, it appears that the future of wagering in the state of Washington is very doubtful. According to a recent Associated Press report, the Washington State Supreme Court has just refused to hear a case brought by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) against the State of Washington. The court cited, among other reasons, that the NCAA had not provided adequate evidence that it has a legitimate reason to ban sports betting. According to the Associated Press, the three-judge panel will issue its decision later this month.
This decision may be unfortunate, but it doesn’t necessarily mean the end of Washington State’s glorious sports wagering tradition. According to the AP, officials from the NCAA are hopeful that the court will reconsider its decision and lift the ban. If the court does not, then the NCAA will have to find a new way to regulate its sports betting programs, including perhaps establishing a lottery so that college students can bet small amounts of money on sports they choose. However, if the court does lift the ban on betting, it will most likely mean that betting on college games will once again become illegal in Washington State.
There are some officials, however, who are opposed to legalized sports betting. According to these people, the legalized system of blackjack and poker would provide criminals with an opportunity to profit from innocent individuals. Proponents of legalized sports betting, including the Washington State House, say that the new system would create legal gaming opportunities for law abiding citizens and keep the state financially solvent. Opponents argue that the bill is simply a money grab by the major bookmakers, saying that there will not be enough money to cover the costs involved. Proponents hope to get enough votes to override the members of the house who are against the bill. The final vote will likely be held on May 8th.