Supreme Court lifts sports betting ban

This morning, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal law that required states to band gambling on the outcome of sporting events.

News 25’s Veronica Bayona visited Palace Casino Resort and brings us more on what this decision means for Mississippi Coast casinos.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of New Jersey effectively killed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, the federal law that essentially limited sports betting to one state for the last 25 years.  Palace Casino Resort General Manager Keith Crosby said, “We are looking at it conservatively and saying it is an additional amenity. It’ll make us regionally more competitive and that’s important for all the businesses in the area.”

With a 6-3 vote, the Supreme Court ruled that legalizing sports betting should be left up to each state. “I think bottom line is that there’s a thirst for new sources of taxable revenue, regardless of where they came from.”

Crosby tells News 25 casinos and state regulators are actively working on drafting rules to allow sport betting. “Actually the best news is that our regulatory folks, the gaming commission have gotten way out of the front of this issue. There’s already been proposed regulations circulated so we are as ready as we can be.”

Crosby says the next steps include getting the regulations approved and introducing the proper equipment for sports betting to the Mississippi Coast casinos. “I think what everybody is looking at is let’s make sure we have it up and running by football season.”

This could be a big win for casinos on the Gulf Coast as illegal sports betting already generates roughly $150 billion a year nationwide. “You’d be surprised. There’s a pretty established book making audience in this area already so it’s not going to be new to the Coast or new to our surrounding areas. It’s just going to be legal.”

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