Kansas Legislature Approves Sports Betting

Senate Bill 84 has advanced through the Kansas state legislature and is now sitting on the desk of Governor Laura Kelly. That bill seeks to legalize sports betting, and Kelly is expected to sign the bill quickly, and do so without any changes.

This bill has been making the rounds over the last few weeks, and there were some changes made in the last couple of days. The House made some minor adjustments to SB 84 and the bill was actually rejected with the first vote in the Senate.

After the House was able to pass a new version of the bill, senators in Kansas approved SB 84 by a vote of 21-13 on Thursday. This bill legalizes both mobile and retail betting in the state, but it’s unclear how quickly this industry could launch.

There are four casinos in the state of Kansas, and each casino will have access to three online skins. Partnering with a professional sports team will also unlock an additional skin, but there is only one option at this time.

Most of the retail betting will be done at the casinos in the state, but there could be close to 200 locations scattered throughout the state. A complete list of Kansas sports betting laws is not currently available, but those rules should start to fall into place over the next several months.

Opponents Ultimately Defeated

Throughout the process to legalize sports betting, lawmakers in the state were faced with plenty of opposition from critics. Sportsbook operators and representatives from professional sports teams were in a group supporting this legislation, and that group ultimately were more convincing than the opposition.

One of the biggest complaints stemmed from the fact that 80% of the sports betting revenue would be set aside for a specific purpose. Kansas is hoping to get a professional team to move across the border, and that money will be used to cover those costs.

Problem gambling is another issue that was mentioned by opponents of this bill, and that argument has been used in other states as well. The sports betting revenue will be taxed at just 10%, and there were many that wished for a larger percent of that revenue.

Kansas Gets Jump on Missouri

Both Kansas and Missouri were looking to legalize sports betting in 2022 and it appeared as if the states were in a race to get something done. Kansas City spreads into both states, and sports betting could ultimately have a big impact on the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals.

Missouri is still working on sports betting legislation, and there is a chance that it could also get a bill passed at some point in 2022. This would create a race to get the industry up and running first as sportsbooks and local casinos would benefit with a revenue boost.