After several months of back-and-forth between lawmakers and the governor, online and mobile sports betting will be coming to New York.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced his budget for the 2022 fiscal year Tuesday and it included the legalization of mobile sports betting to help generate new tax revenue to help pay for the $212 billion spending agenda.
New York already allows sports betting at its upstate casinos, but by allowing mobile betting, it allows residents who live closer to or in New York City a more convenient option to wager. The move will likely put a dent in New Jersey’s market, which has been the country’s most successful since its launch.
At the end of last year, there were many lawmakers in the legislature who were pushing for legalizing mobile betting, but Cuomo opposed the expansion. The governor wanted to give the state’s upstate casinos a chance to gain traction in the market before allowing competition.
Cuomo eventually changed his tune in January, saying that he planned on including mobile betting in his budget.
But last month, as the deadline was nearing, there was no movement on the issue and it appeared it would be left out. A research note from Deutsche bank said that it seemed unlikely it would be included since there were “too many variant agendas and too little time to get the issue sorted out in this budget session.”
Despite the bearish sentiment surrounding online betting, Cuomo included it in the budget. Ultimately, there is still disagreement on how the market will function.
According to a report from Market Watch, under Cuomo’s plan, the New York Lottery will run the operation and license out proposals to other sportsbooks.
Many lawmakers, on the other hand, want to let private companies run the operation like neighboring New Jersey and Pennsylvania implemented with massive success. Several lawmakers have voiced criticism for Cuomo’s plan, citing a lack of competition in the space.
In January, when Cuomo first talked about legalizing online betting, he said that he was “not here to make casinos a lot of money” and that he was only concerned with raising revenue for the state.
“So we have a different model for sports betting,” said Cuomo in January.
There is still no timeframe for when the new market will be launched.