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News on Sports Betting in North Carolina and International Waters

June 21, 2022

Some interesting news related to the U.S. sports betting community came out this week. Here is an update from the state of North Carolina and International Waters.

North Carolina House to Finally Discuss Sports Betting Legislation

For the last nine (9) months, Senate Bill 688 has been stuck in the North Carolina House of Representatives. With the current legislative session set to end on June 30, 2022, the House has finally announced they will bring this sports betting legislation to the floor for discussion and possibly a vote. Is there enough time to get SB 688 signed into law in 10 days?

As of today, North Carolina residents might still get the opportunity to bet on college and professional football by the time fall rolls around. It’s a slim chance. But there is a chance according to State Rep. Jason Saine. This is what he said in a press release:

“September, October, I don’t think it’s unreasonable. I think it’s probably a little later. A lot of sports right at the end of the year, the first of the year, so hopefully, we’re there. Again, I’d hate to lose that revenue. But we’re not going to go too fast to where we can’t handle it.”

To get this legislation to the finish line, sweeping changes within the legislation are expected. In its current form, twelve (12) online/mobile sports betting licenses would be issued by the North Carolina Lottery Commission. Licensees would be required to pay an initial $1.0 million for a five-year license, a $1.0 renewal fee every five years after that, and pony up a tax payment of 14% on sports betting gross revenue. Providers, online/mobile operators, would have to pay a $30,000 license fee.

Note: Retail sports betting outlets are already accepting bets at Harrah’s Cherokee and Harrah’s Cherokee Indian Valley casinos.

BetMGM Inks Deal with Carnival Cruise Lines

After inking a deal with BetMGM, Carnival Corporation and its affiliated companies will soon be able to offer onboard online sports betting to its customer. This news comes on the heels of the inking of a deal between Carnival and top U.S. sports betting/casino operator BetMGM.

Carnival Corporation owns and operates the following cruise lines: Carnival, Princess, and Holland America. In the coming months, about 50 ships from these vacation providers will be rolling access to BetMGM’s mobile sports betting/casino platform. As part of the deal, both companies will be cross-promoting each other’s products. It’s worth noting that Princess Cruise Lines already offers a proprietary retail sports betting option called Ocean Sportsbook, which is available on some ships. It’s not clear how the BetMGM agreement will affect the Ocean Sportsbook option.

Of course, there will be stringent regulations related to when and where Carnival patrons will be allowed to place their wagers. For the foreseeable future, access to BetMGM’s mobile platform will be limited to ships while in international waters. As ships pull into country waters where online gambling activities are not legal, access will be temporarily terminated.

Ship bettors will need to be at least 21 years old before being granted access to the BetMGM platform.


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