Connecticut sports betting regulations passed but there is still work to do

On Tuesday, a joint legislative committee approved emergency regulations for sports betting in Connecticut.

This comes after the Connecticut Lottery selected Rush Street Interactive as its sports betting partner last month.

Sports betting regulations approved

On Tuesday, the joint legislative committee approved rules that were crafted by the Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) by a vote of 9-4.  

Although the approved regulations were straightforward, there were several points questioned by legislators.

The majority of the discussion revolved around whether or not consumers should be able to use joint bank accounts to fund gambling accounts. Initially, using a joint account to fund gambling was banned in the first round of regulations, however, this was later removed in the substitute regulations.

During the meeting, DCP Commissioner Michelle Seagull explained it would not be clear to an operator how many people were using the bank account. 

Senator Cathy Osten has also requested that the DCP look into expanding sports betting funding options to include more commonly-used methods like Venmo and PayPal.

Although these methods are not banned by state law, Seagull said this could create issues as the law only allows for one credit or debit card to be linked to an account. 

Legislators will have another chance to discuss the regulations during a public hearing where the permanent regulations will be debated within the next six months.

However, there is still a lot of work to be done before sports betting can go live in Connecticut.

What else needs to be done?

Before sports betting can go live in the state of Connecticut, the regulations must be codified with the Secretary of State’s office once the DCP makes the technical changes to them.

On top of this, the Connecticut sports betting industry still needs to be licensed, this includes organisations that will offer the activity, provide services as well as employees.

However, licensing cannot begin until the US Department of the Interior published the updated tribal compacts in the Federal Register.

As a result of this, it is not yet clear when sports betting will launch in the state. However, Connecticut Lottery Chairman Rob Simmelkjaer expects to begin taking wagers during the “early part” of the upcoming football season.

Sports betting in Connecticut

In February, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont included provisions for sports betting and online gambling in the state budget. 

The Governor then went on to agree on new tribal gambling compact agreements with both the Mohegan Tribe and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe.

Under the agreements, the tribes would be required to pay 20% tax on online gambling revenue while sports betting would be taxed at 13.75%.

In May, the state Senate approved the legislation to enact the agreement by a vote of 28-6 after passing the House of Representatives by a vote of 122-21. The measure was then sent to Lamont for approval, which at the time, he said he would sign into law.

The law also provided the Connecticut Lottery with the ability to offer sports betting in the state.

Last month, the state lottery announced it would partner with Rush Street interactive for sports betting.

DraftKings partnered with the Mashantucket Pequot Indians in late 2020, while FanDuel teamed up with the Mohegan Indians in July

FanDuel’s deal ultimately forced the tribal group to amend its existing deal with the supplier Kambi. FanDuel will now provide Mohegan with sports betting services in Connecticut.