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Massachusetts sports betting could be delayed by at least three months and may not go live until 2023, says Mass Gaming Commission

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The Massachusetts Gambling Commission on Thursday morning put the brakes on hopes that sports betting could take place in time for the fall football season, as some state legislators suggested this week, prompting people instead to urged us to consider the amount of regulatory work that needs to be done to establish a new industry.

A law to legalize sports betting in Massachusetts is still pending on the desk of Governor Charlie Baker, who has until Thursday, August 11th to act after passing the state legislature earlier this week. At a public meeting on .

To temper expectations, Commissioner Brad Hill said he wanted the public to understand that the implementation and launch of a new gambling industry doesn’t happen overnight. “You have to take your time,” he said, to get the gambling right.

“I want the public to understand that this is not going to happen overnight, as we commissioners are beginning to understand,” the former state representative said. I’ve seen some quotes from people who want to get this up and running in a very short amount of time, and I’m not speaking for the entire committee, at least in my view. But from my point of view it will take a little longer than people are probably expecting.

Lawmakers reached a last-minute deal on sports betting earlier this week as formal legislation for the 2021-2022 session comes to an end. Baker’s previous bill to allow sports betting, including college games, in Massachusetts gives the Gambling Commission greater powers to bring the burgeoning industry to life.

All eyes have been on Baker since the legislature passed the bill, and although Baker has expressed support for the bill in the past, there has been no indication as to when he will sign it into law. But two state senators headed by sports betting said earlier this week that they hope legalized betting will begin this fall, just in time for football. .

Pointing to the preparations made by the Gambling Commission in anticipation of Baker’s approval of the sports betting bill, Sen. Eric Lesser said the Commission was “ready to begin work to begin implementation.” ‘ said.

The Longmeadow Democrat previously said in an interview with MassLive, “So hopefully it will be this fall.”

Senator Michael Rodriguez, the Senate Budget Committee chairman and chief negotiator for sports betting, said on Monday that wagering could “hopefully” begin this fall.

Asked if there will be sports betting in time for the football season, a Westport Democrat replied, “I think so.” “Hopefully. You can bet on the state football team, so you can bet on the Patriots.”

But at a Gambling Commission meeting Thursday morning, regulators who could soon be in charge of creating a sports betting industry in Massachusetts outlined a process that could take months and could be extended until next year. There is a possibility that

Commissioner Jordan Maynard said, “The Commission staff has definitely been prepared for this, but I want my fellow Baystarters to know that they have to look at legislation.” It will take, but we are ready and we have seen it.”

Hill emphasized that the process “doesn’t happen overnight.”

“I think our public needs to understand that there is a process that we must go through to certify the people before us, not just the license,” he said. Told.

Gaming Commission staff began outlining the application process for potential licensees. Timeline estimates range from 3 to 6 months. Executive Assistant Jacqueline Knecht said the application process could take as little as a few months, depending on what the commissioner wants to include in the application.

“Some jurisdictions do it based on the application submitted, while others offer a potential oral presentation to each applicant to present the entire application,” she said. The general consensus on timelines is between three and six months in each jurisdiction, some very short, some much longer.”

Additionally, outside of the licensee application process, the Commission may potentially A long list of candidates must be drafted and published. Rules.

Gaming Commission legal counsel Todd Grossman said the regulation would ultimately serve as a how-to manual for sports betting companies.

“An effective regulatory scheme will ultimately be clear, comprehensive and fair, providing a precise framework for all the essential elements of being licensed and operating in a regulated environment,” he said. said.

Deputy general counsel Caitlin Monaghan said the commission’s attorneys came up with 225 different potential regulations on how wagers are submitted to technical standards, from details of the application process to arbitration hearings. I was.

That’s a lot, she admitted, and lawyers have created a three-tier system to prioritize which regulation should be addressed first.

“You may be asking yourself, ‘How are we going to survive the Section 225 regulation?'” she said. “We have to prioritize in some way, shape, or form. That’s why the regulation she created three priorities. It’s the second.”

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