02 / 07 / 2020
  - 10:44:58 AM
Sports Betting In Massachusetts Is Getting Closer

By MyFM's Rick Michaels - More than a year and a half after the Supreme Court gave states the green light to take legal bets on sports, the legislative committee that's been studying the issue and considering the possibility of bringing it to Massachusetts looks to be approaching the end of its process. A suite of sports betting bills, including one filed last year by Gov. Charlie Baker, was included in an extension order filed Wednesday by the Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies. The committee is seeking permission to keep working on the bills through Friday, Feb. 28. State Representative Michael Soter, a Bellingham Republican who serves on the Economic Development Committee says the committee wants to make sure "that we are putting all the necessary steps in place to effectively roll out the best product." He said three of the biggest issues being discussed are how to ensure any sports betting system has consumer protections and responsible gambling safeguards built in how to insulate college athletes from any undue influence that could arise if betting on NCAA games is permitted, and how to shield the Lottery from sports betting "bringing in a whole different competitive piece." If Massachusetts does allow betting, Soter said he would favor a framework that includes mobile betting and physical sportsbooks. If we allow sportsbooking, I'm sure there's going to be a component where the casinos are going to be involved, as Plainridge Park Casino in nearby Plainville is preparing for that day. Soter says, he thinks we'll start seeing something arise over the next few months, as Soter also feels that the governor has done his part, to push the Legislature to act on his sports betting bill. 

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