Kansas Governor Signs Sports Betting into Law

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Kansas became the second state of 2022 to legalize sports betting when Gov. Laura Kelly signed SB 84 on Thursday.

Kelly announced Wednesday that she would sign the bill this week.

It came less than a month after Kansas’s both chambers legalized online and retail sports betting in April in a mutual race against Missouri lawmakers.

Kansas has become the 35th state to legalize sports betting within four years of the US Supreme Court’s historic ruling against the PASPA in May 2018.

The Kansas sports betting law allows each of the state’s four casinos to operate retail sports betting. Each casino can have up to three mobile skins, and a casino can request an additional skin to partner with a professional sports team in the state.

The casino can also partner with restaurants, bars, and other businesses to offer up to 50 retail sports betting kiosks.

The Sunflower State will raise a 10% tax on sports betting revenue, 80% of which will fund the efforts to bring a professional sports team to the state.

According to estimates, Kansas could draw up to $10 million annually from sports betting.

New Law Becomes Effective July 1

Though the new Kansas sports betting law becomes effective July 1, the state regulators have already begun working on reviewing the new law.

The Kansas Lottery and the Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission (KRGC) are empowered to regulate the new industry. They have already separated out responsibilities and started the process of promulgating sports betting rules.

Lottery Executive Director Stephen Durrell told media they hope to “get things done in the near future.” But he added that he would prioritize a great product over a quick rollout.

A unique feature of the Kansas Constitution empowers the state to technically own all gaming in the state, where regulators work as management service providers.

Kansans can wager on professional sports, college games, motorsports, and any other sport/event approved by the KRGC.

When Do We Expect Kansas Sports Betting Launch?

The new law, which also legalizes historical horse racing, requires state regulators to launch operators on or before Jan. 1, 2023. However, the question of when the first legal bet could be placed in Kansas depends on the regulators.

The Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission and Kansas Lottery will now work laboriously to wrap up the regulatory and licensing process, allowing Kansans to take legal bets on their favorite sports.

According to the regulators, Kansas sports betting is expected to launch sometime this fall, in time for the start of the NFL betting season.

Besides legalizing commercial sports betting, the new law also paves the way for tribal sports betting in the near future. Kansas tribes can renew their gaming compacts to offer mobile sports betting or retail betting at their casinos.

Kansas Beats Historical Rival Missouri

Kansas State’s historical rivalry with Missouri renewed with the sports betting legalization in recent times. The sports betting proponents in each state talked about beating the other state in legalizing the industry.

Kansas City Chiefs have been the bone of contention, with each state wooing the professional football team to play on its side of the border.

The efforts intensified after the Chiefs – originally based in Kansas City, Missouri – were rumored to move to Kansas.

Though Chiefs’ representative clarified in the last month’s hearing that the Chiefs are not planning to move to Kansas, Kansas lawmakers have earmarked 80% of the sports betting revenue to attract professional sports teams to come to the state.

Recent months saw lawmakers of each state reach the finishing line before the other. With Kelly’s signature, the Kansas lawmakers have achieved their goal, while Missouri lawmakers’ efforts appear to have failed in recent weeks.

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