On June 10, 2021, the Louisiana Legislature advanced a key piece of sports wagering legislation, Senate Bill 247, to Governor John Bel Edwards. If signed into law, Senate Bill 247 will establish the all-important regulatory framework for the conduct of sports wagering in Louisiana and put certain parishes one step closer to offering sports wagering.
In November 2020, voters in 55 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes voted to authorize sports wagering in their respective parishes. Sports wagering, however, is not yet being offered in the state because the Louisiana Legislature and the Louisiana Gaming Control Board (the Board) first need to implement operational-, tax-, and licensing-related rules to govern the activity. Senate Bill 247 and a few other pieces of legislation aim to do just that.
Senate Bill 247, if signed into law, will authorize the issuance of 20 licenses to operate sportsbooks in Louisiana. The licenses will first be made available to the land-based casino in New Orleans, the 15 riverboat casinos in Louisiana, and the four horse racing tracks. Prospective licensees will be required to apply for sports wagering licenses on forms prescribed by the Board and to undergo suitability investigations conducted by the Gaming Enforcement Division of the Louisiana State Police and the Board. In assessing an applicant’s suitability, the Board will be tasked with considering the applicant’s capitalization adequacy and financial stability, as well as the applicant’s history of material noncompliance with gaming regulations and involvement in litigation, among other factors. Continue Reading