Legalizing sports betting in Massachusetts could bring in between $70 million and $80 million in initial licensing fees alone and then annual revenue of $60 million, Economic Development Committee Chairman Jerald Parisella said.
The Beverly Democrat detailed the House sports betting bill as representatives prepared to debate 28 amendments but look poised to handily pass the wagering bill.
The legislation (H 3977) would put sports betting under the Gaming Commission and allow casinos, the state’s lone slots parlor, two simulcasting facilities and horse racing tracks to apply for licenses to take in-person wagers.
They could also have between one and three mobile sports betting platforms, depending on the facility. Mobile-only operators could also seek licenses.
Every license would carry a $5 million licensing fee.
“We estimate if all those licenses go out, the commonwealth could get $70 to $80 million just in licensing fees,” he said. A sportsbook’s revenue from in-person bets would be taxed at 12.5 percent and revenue from mobile wagers at 15 percent.
Parisella said the higher tax on mobile operators is in recognition of the added costs that brick-and-mortar facilities would have and in hopes of driving business to businesses that employ people in Massachusetts.
“I believe a conservative estimate is that we’ll raise about $60 million annually from the taxes on the sports betting,” Parisella said, citing a number higher than most previous estimates for sports betting in Massachusetts. “And as it gets matured, we believe that those numbers could rise.” An additional 1 percent tax would be levied on wagers placed on sporting events held in Massachusetts to be distributed proportionately between the facilities that hosted the events to be used for “sports wagering security and integrity.”
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