Oklahoma, a state with a population of nearly 4 million, is one of several states currently working towards legalizing sports betting. Despite the recent conclusion of the Super Bowl, residents of the state will have to wait until next year’s big game to place their first legal wagers. Nevertheless, efforts to legalize sports betting are ongoing.
In November, State Governor Kevin Stitt revealed a new plan proposing the legalization of sports betting. The plan includes a 20% tax rate for mobile sports betting, with operators required to pay an initial fee of $500,000 and an annual fee of $100,000. Retail betting, offered by the state’s federally recognized tribes, would be subject to a 15% tax and would involve updating gaming compacts with the tribes.
However, the proposed plan faced criticism from the tribes as it did not grant them exclusive rights to mobile betting. In addition to this plan, a new bill, Senate Bill 1434 (SB 1434), was introduced earlier this month, which calls for changes to the Oklahoma Education Lottery Act to pave the way for legal sports wagering. The bill is currently undergoing the legislative process.
Oklahoma shares borders with six states, and the legalization of sports betting is gaining momentum in neighboring Missouri. However, Texas does not currently permit any form of wagering. On the other hand, Arkansas, Kansas, Colorado, and New Mexico all offer sports betting, leading supporters of legalization to express concerns that bettors may cross state borders to place wagers.
In addition to Oklahoma and Missouri, lawmakers in Hawaii and Georgia are also working towards legalizing sports betting, according to the American Gaming Association. As the momentum for sports betting legalization continues to grow, it remains to be seen how soon residents of Oklahoma will be able to legally place their wagers.