Betting aficionados in the state of Maryland in the US just got the best Christmas present ever! One year after the legalization of sports betting was approved on the ballot, the people of Maryland will now see the legalization of sports gambling come to life! At the time of writing, only seven establishments have gained the Maryland gambling license, but we are certain that many others will soon join the party. The first casinos to launch sports betting were Live! Casino Hotel & Maryland, Horseshoe Casino, and MGM National Harbor.
The sports betting service was introduced to the public, so they don’t have to scratch their heads wondering how to place a bet. The demonstrations lasted for two whole days, during which selected guests got a chance to see how the entire thing works. The demonstrations were supervised by Maryland State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency teams. Their main role was to make sure products are introduced in compliance with the state law. In addition to that, they also had to make sure all the systems and equipment were working properly.
Most sportsbooks in Maryland will offer sports betting via special kiosks and terminals, as well as ticket windows. The first bet in Old Line State was placed by the former Baltimore Ravens star Ed Reed. Reed chose to bet on UFC fighter Dustin Poirier, hoping that he will defeat Charles Oliveira. The famous free safety was also excited about the job opportunities that legalized sports betting will bring to the Baltimore area. He explained that responsible gaming is fun, but jobs for the community are more exciting.
The second bet was placed by no other than the Governor of the state. Larry Hogan decided to bet on football. He agreed with Reed that the betting industry will increase the employment rate. Hogan also noted the entire industry will help keep more money in-state and provide the much-needed revenue for public education.
Whether sports betting should be legal or not was decided by a public vote in November 2020. 67% of all voters wanted to see sports betting legalized. The bill, known as HB940, was signed into law in May 2021. Still, it took some time to put everything into motion.
The next thing sports fans hope for is the legalization of online betting. At the moment, there has been no official announcement on this matter. However, many lottery officials hope it will happen at some point in 2022, probably by the end of the year.
All sportsbooks operating in this state will have to contribute 15% of their revenue to the needs of the public education system. This amount is in addition to a special action started by Governor Hogan. The Republican politician initiated what is known as “Hogan’s Lockbox”, which requires a further $4.4 billion investment into the school system, all powered by the gaming industry.