Legislation Tackles Controversial Matter of Video Lottery Machines
North Carolina has taken another significant stride towards the legalization of sports betting, as the Senate Commerce Committee has granted its approval to a bill that paves the way for the introduction of mobile sportsbooks in the state.
A significant advancement in the legalization of mobile sports betting has been proposed through HB 347 in North Carolina. Currently, only retail sportsbooks are permitted for legal sports betting in the state. However, there have been discussions surrounding the inclusion of sweepstakes parlors with video lottery machines in the legislation, leading to some concerns.
Following amendments to the bill, the state lottery will now have the authority to license and regulate approximately 34,000 video lottery machines throughout North Carolina. Sweepstakes parlors have been a source of controversy, and earlier this year, law enforcement cracked down on two local arcades in Charlotte-Mecklenburg for engaging in illicit gambling, resulting in the seizure of $95,000. Advocates of the amended bill believe that it will effectively eradicate such unlawful operations.
The state lottery will assume responsibility for overseeing legal video gambling establishments, which will be interconnected through a central network. Additionally, 40% of the profits generated from these legal machines will be directly allocated to the state.
Before reaching a floor vote, the Senate version of the bill must undergo review by two more committees. However, prior to any vote, Governor Roy Cooper of North Carolina has expressed his support for the legalization of mobile sports betting.