NYS Exposed: The lost season of legal sports betting

December 29, 2018 11:11 PM

For many sports fans, football is king. 

For casinos and sportsbooks that now have legal sports betting the college and NFL seasons did not disappoint. New Jersey saw nearly $90 million put down on games during just the first month.


Casinos in New York did not see one penny. Betting on sports still is not allowed in the state.

The gaming commission has the power to set the rules for how it would work but the group has not done that.

“I don't know what they are waiting for I really don't,” State Assemblyman Gary Pretlow said. “There are no constitutional issues concerning the free standing casinos so I don't know what their delay was.”

The Democrat plans to push to fully legalize sports betting in New York again when the new session begins in January. Lawmakers punted on the issue in 2018.

Pretlow says they will not be able to ignore it in 2019 after seeing how other sports books are cashing in right next door.

“I know people now that now are traveling across the George Washington bridge placing their bets then driving back over to New York so that's where the real money is for the state,” Pretlow added.

But Pretlow does not expect any real movement in Albany at least until the spring when the budget goes through.

A 2013 law that created four state licensed casinos leaves the door open for those to start taking bets immediately after the gaming commission's rules are in place. Those include del Lago in the Finger Lakes and Tioga Downs.

Jason Settlemoir helps run Tioga Downs in the Southern Tier. He is also the GM and COO the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, NJ. Fans have been placing bets there for months.

“There's about 19 million people that surround us here and we're excited about the opportunity that exist here in New Jersey especially with no current legislation in New York,” Settlemoir said. “If they want to make a legal sports bet they're going to come here.”

There has not been a lot of talk about sports betting in recent gaming commission meetings. A spokesperson told News10NBC there is still no update or timetable for when the regulations will be drawn up and finished.

Despite the lack of movement in New York after the U.S. Supreme Court lifted the federal ban, the expectation from several lawmakers and the governor is that something will still get done in 2019.


Brennan Somers

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