How Can Texas Take Inspiration From Other States’ Sports Betting Legislation?
Sports betting is a sector which has undergone real transformation within the US. This was prompted by the historic US Supreme Court ruling of 2018 which enabled individual states to set their own laws in this area. Since this landmark decision, many states have chosen to legalize sports betting.
Anyone who lives in Miami or south Florida will be aware of the headlines which launching a legalized betting market brings. Florida had a legitimate sports betting market for a few short months in late 2021, which many in the area welcomed.
This was brought to a halt though once a judge at the federal level ruled against an agreement made by state officials with the Seminole tribe. With Florida being such a populated place that is crazy about sports, it is hoped that some progress can be made on the market here opening up again soon.
Texas is another state which is in sports betting limbo
Miami residents who feel sore about the lack of legal sports betting options in Florida can take some solace from the fact they are not alone. While other states remain closed to this activity still, it is perhaps Texas which stands out the most.
The Lone Star state shares common ground with Florida in that it is not possible to bet on sports legally yet within its borders. Unlike Florida though, Texas has never had any form of legal sports betting available — even for a short period.
Many who championed being able to bet on sports in Texas had high hopes for this changing in 2023, as the Texas legislative session was active from early January until late May. While the subject was discussed, it was not signed off on when the session ended for another two years.
Could Texas legalize sports betting in 2025?
As with Florida, Texas is a sports obsessed state and one which is home to a large population for sports betting companies. This suggests it is ripe for a legal sports betting market to be launched, which could happen in 2025. It’s important to also factor in the political will in the Lone Star state for this to happen.
It is a subject which many local politicians seem to be onboard with now and this could result in it being given the green light at the next available opportunity. This is even more likely if Texas were to look at other states who have passed sports betting legislature into law and the inspiration they can
take from them.
But which states are good examples for Texas to take a lead from?
To say that New Jersey’s legal sports betting scene is thriving is an understatement! This is largely due to the legislation that has been passed which allowed it to happen and the variety of sportsbooks people in this state have to bet with. The best New Jersey sports betting promos for 2023 also show
why so many people in this state are betting on sports now.
In terms of what inspiration Texas could take from New Jersey, officials there should look at the way NJ politicians never gave up the fight to make sports betting legal. It was largely due to the concerted efforts of NJ lawmakers that the PASPA Act was overturned in 2018 and the outlook on sports betting
changed for everyone moving ahead. If officials in Texas can copy this never say die attitude and keep bringing bills to the legislative session to legalize sports betting in the state, they are likely to achieve their goals.
Miami residents might wonder why Texas would take inspiration from Florida, when their own state does not offer legalized sports betting yet. With this in mind, it is key to remember that taking inspiration from others on what not to do can often be crucial.
In terms of legislation, this simply means not making the blunders Florida did when concocting their agreement with the Seminole tribe. Any agreements made must be water-tight and stand up to federal scrutiny, otherwise Texas could find it’s brand-new sports betting scene shutdown in the same way
that Florida has for now.
Colorado launched its own legal sports betting market back in May 2020 and it has been a roaring success. One tip Texas could take from their sports betting legislation is how important it is for only authorized sportsbooks/apps to operate in state borders.
This was a central part of the framework around betting in the Centennial state and ensures gamblers there can have fun safely. Texas must also focus on this in their own sports betting bills and make sure any market launched is properly regulated.
Illinois is famous for its pro sport teams, so it was no surprise to see the state’s General Assembly pass a sports betting bill into law which was then signed in by Governor Pritzker in 2019. One insight Texas lawmakers could draw from the approach of Illinois is to understand how important mobile betting provisions are in any legislation.
This is because mobile betting is very popular now globally and a way many people like to wager on games. If this is not included in any bill Texas passes, they may miss out on a lot of potential revenue and visitors moving ahead.
Why are states like Texas looking to legalize sports betting?
While the above shows the inspiration Texas could take from other states sports betting markets and legislation, you may wonder why they see it as being so important. By far the biggest factor is the huge revenues which a legal betting market could bring into state coffers.
For instance, New Jersey has generated a sports betting handle of over $33bn since opening its market and generates more than $300m in tax from sportsbooks. These kinds of figures are very attractive for places like Texas, who can use them to plug gaps in public finance or use the money to improve public facilities and programs for local residents. With the size of the global sports betting market pegged to hit almost $130bn by 2028, it is clear how lucrative legal betting on sports could be.
Why else might Texas focus on sports betting?
Although money may be the main driver, it is not the only potential benefit states like Texas are eagerly eyeing up if sports betting is signed into law there. It would almost certainly result in companies in the sector setting up in the state and provide a boost to employment figures.
This focus on jobs is not exclusive to Texas and something all states prioritize. For example, Florida is constantly looking for ways to boost employment opportunities and attract companies to the area. This can be seen in non-profit organization Thinking Huts move to Miami and other ways a state like Florida works to attract the best businesses and companies to the area. Sports betting represents another way of doing this and is almost certainly a benefit Texas is looking at.
Places like Texas which are eager to legalize sports betting also consider how it will allow them to be more competitive with neighboring states where people can already bet on games. By doing the same, they are able to attract more visitors and avoid losing out to nearby states who have no issues with this activity.
What can Texas take from other states’ sports betting legislation?
Although Texas failed to sign sports betting into law in the 2023 legislative session, it will likely be back on the table for discussion in 2025. If lawmakers in the state want to have a good chance of it working out, they could do a lot worse than taking some inspiration from states such as New Jersey while avoiding the blunders Florida itself has made.