Wyoming’s hopes for launching online sports betting were officially rekindled after a bill supporting the regulation of the activity was revived last week by state legislators. House Bill 133 had initially been shot down last Tuesday by a majority vote of 32 to 28 before it was reintroduced and given the green light the following day, incidentally by 32 – 28, the same vote margin by which it was previously rejected.
Representative Mike Yin, a Democrat from Teton County who had voted against HB 133 at first had a change of heart for reasons unknown to anyone and resubmitted the online gambling bill for reconsideration. When the House put the bill up for a reconsideration vote on Wednesday, Chad Banks, another Democrat from Sweetwater Country, and two more legislators backtracked and voted in favor of the bill, effectively turning tables on the online gambling measures.
Interestingly, the reconsideration vote was possible even though the Tuesday vote had been on the third and final reading because of a legislative rule that allows for wiggle room should a lawmaker change their mind. The rules of the state legislature in Wyoming permit a lawmaker to ask for the reconsideration of a bill as long as they had voted with the majority in the sessions that led to the passing of the said bill. With the passage of HB 133 in the House, the ball is now in the Senate’s court to take Wyoming’s sports bettors to the promised land.
A Breakdown of Wyoming’s New Online Sports Betting Bill
Through HB 133 lawmakers in the Equality State are looking to join states like Tennessee in the launch of a state-wide online only sports betting market. With that in mind, we still shouldn’t forget that the Northern Arapaho Tribe in the state has plans to offer in-person sports betting in three of their tribal casinos operating in the state.
The legislation was brought to the table by a team of six legislators working in unison as co-sponsors, and another two lawmakers championing the bill in the Senate. HB 133 plans to allow anyone over the age of 18 years in the state to legally place online and mobile wagers on sports events anywhere within stateliness. The legal sports betting market would be regulated by Wyoming Gaming Commission, the state gaming ombudsman and the regulator will be given the mandate to offer licenses to up to five different entities.
From the details of the bill, it appears that lawmakers are pretty serious about who is to offer sports betting services to residents as there’s a measure that requires license seekers to have operated in at least five other states or jurisdictions in the US as a qualification. As such only big household names such as the Nasdaq listed DraftKings, FanDuel, William Hill, PointsBet and BetMGM will have the privilege to offer online and mobile sports betting services in the Equality State.
Operators applying for a license will have to part with an initial fee of $100K and another $50K renewal fee every five years. As for taxations, operators will be paying 10% of gross gambling revenue to the state.
Collegiate Sports Betting is A Go in Wyoming
Generally, Wyoming’s online and mobile sports betting regulations are with the industry averages across the country except maybe for the legal gambling age as most states prefer to put the age restriction at 21 years old and above. The only other aspect that make Wyoming’s legal online and mobile betting landscape stand out is the fact that there aren’t any restrictions on eSports or collegiate sports betting.
So, just like in Colorado, and New Hampshire Wyoming sports bettors will be allowed to wager on not only out-of-state college games but also in-state competitions involve the University of Wyoming basketball and football teams. States like New Jersey which have been having a blanket ban on collegiate sports betting are also looking to lift the college betting prohibition to expand gambling laws and include college sports so that they can bring in more money to an already booming sports betting sector.
However, even with college betting accepted, there’s a clause that prohibits wagers on events where athletes are below 18 years old or placing prop bets on athletes aged below 18 years.