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O’Brien testifies on sports betting bill

Under the legislation, sports wagering would be permitted for those age 21 and over only at existing casinos and horse racetracks with video lottery terminals.
Sports betting 10292019
State Sens. Sean O'Brien, left, and John Eklund provide sponsor testimony on their legislation to legalize sports betting in Ohio.

COLUMBUS — State Sens. Sean J. O’Brien, D-Bazetta, and John Eklund, R-Munson Township, testified Tuesday (Oct. 29) on their bill to regulate sports betting in Ohio in front of the Senate General Government and Agency Review Committee.

“Under Senate Bill 111, people interested in sports betting can have confidence that the state of Ohio is protecting them and that everything is official and above board,” O’Brien said in a news release.

SB 111 was introduced after a Supreme Court ruling gave states the freedom to decide whether sports wagering should be offered within their borders.

“Sports wagering is something that people are going to find a way to do anyway,” O’Brien said. “Regulating it in Ohio is a win-win in that it makes it safer for everyone involved, while creating a new revenue source for problem gambling treatment programs and other things that will benefit Ohioans.”

Under SB 111, sports wagering would be permitted for those age 21 and over only at existing Ohio casinos and horse racetracks with video lottery terminals. Casino operators or video lottery sales agents would have to apply to the Casino Control Commission to become sports wagering operators under criteria set forth in the bill and would be able to contract with management services firms to conduct the sports wagering. Any devices, supplies and equipment also must be approved by the commission, and any wagers must be initiated, received or otherwise made in Ohio, either in person or via an approved online application.

Additional information about SB 111 can be found here.