Just over three months have passed since Gov. Mike DeWine signed HB29, which legalized sports betting in Ohio.
Yet the moment when Ohioans are able to place a sports bet at a casino or racino, or even through a mobile sportsbook, is still many months away. It’s considered a long and arduous process to construct and launch a statewide sports betting apparatus. Plenty needs to be done before the time arrives when placing sports bets on the Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati Bengals, Columbus Blue Jackets, or Ohio State University will become commonplace in the Buckeye State.
Nonetheless, the law states that sports betting must take place by Jan. 1, 2023.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission is responsible for overseeing the implementation of sports betting in the state. That entails establishing a list of rules, as well as licensing, regulating, investigating, and enforcing state laws concerning sports betting.
The commission’s work on this project has been steady during the first quarter of the year. Much has been completed to keep the process on pace toward completion before year’s end. Yet there’s a lot more work that needs to be done.
Building a sports betting platform
Here’s a look at what has occurred during the first three months of the year concerning the construction of Ohio’s sports betting apparatus.
— US Bets (@US_Bets) March 28, 2022
Only days after DeWine endorsed sports betting in Ohio by signing bill HB29, the commission released Batch 1 of proposed sports gaming rules for stakeholder comments on Dec. 27. Batch 1, which was eventually filed with the Common Sense Initiative (CSI) on Feb. 16, addresses rules concerning general provisions, provisional licensing, and independent testing laboratories. Stakeholder comments referencing Batch 1 were allowed up to Jan. 7.
Batch 1’s proposed sports gaming rules, including any updates, were released for a second round of stakeholder comments on Jan. 18. Stakeholder comments in this round were allowed until Jan. 28.
The commission released Batch 2 of proposed sports gaming rules for stakeholder comments on Jan. 24. This second batch concerns general licensing requirements, Type-A and Type-B proprietor licensing, services provider licensing, general wagering provisions, and equipment. Submission of stakeholder comments was allowed up to Feb. 4, and Batch 2, including any updates, was released for a second round of stakeholder comments on Feb. 14.
CSI filings underway
A second round of stakeholder comments concerning Batch 2 was accepted until Feb. 25, and the commission filed Batch 2 with CSI on March 16.
The commission released Batch 3 of proposed sports gaming rules for stakeholder comments on New Year’s Eve. The third batch of proposed sports gaming rules addresses involuntary exclusion, Type-C entity licensing, and the voluntary exclusion program and responsible gambling plans. An initial round of stakeholder comments was allowed until Feb. 11. The third batch, including any updates, was released for a second round of stakeholder comments on March 1, and a second round of stakeholder comments concerning Batch 3 was accepted until March 11.
Batch 4 of proposed sports gaming rules was released by the commission for stakeholder comments on Feb. 22. This fourth group of rules addresses supplier and employee licensing, Type-A, Type-B, and Type-C proprietor specific duties, and house rules. An initial round of stakeholder comments concerning Batch 4 was accepted until March 4. The fourth batch, including any updates, was released for a second round of stakeholder comments on March. 14.
Batch 5 of proposed sports gaming rules, which is the final grouping of rules established for governing sports betting in Ohio, was released by the commission for stakeholder comments on March 7. The fifth group of rules addresses supplemental Type-A and Type-B proprietor licensing, required procedures, and general proprietor duties. Stakeholder comments were received until March 18. The fifth batch, including any updates, was released for a second round of stakeholder comments on March 28.
Accepting applications for sports betting licenses and the issuing of sports betting licenses are recognized as the next significant phases that should take place within the next quarter in order to have sports betting available in Ohio by Jan. 1, 2023.