Maine Legalizes State-Based Sports Betting

There will be more Maine sportsbooks added to the current crop after the state approved a bill to allow sports betting in the region.

In doing so, they have become the 34th state to legalize state-based sports betting sites after Governor Janet Mills signed LD 585 into own. Under the terms of the bill, ten retail licenses will go to casinos, horse tracks and off-track betting facilities, as well as mobile wagering that will come exclusively to Maine’s four recognized tribes.

The Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, Penobscot, and Passamaquoddy tribes will now be able to either pen deals with various operators or can set up their own mobile sportsbook.

Before now, Maine residents were only able to access sports betting sites that were classed as offshore sportsbooks when based in the state. This news will now see ten new sports retail wagering operators enter and provide competition to the offshore operators.

“This law provides meaningful economic opportunities for the Wabanaki Nations,” said Mills. “It incentivizes investment in tribal communities, and it formalizes a collaboration process on policy that sets the foundation for a stronger relationship in the future.”

The dominance of the tribes has led to criticism in some quarters. Mobile sports betting is set to account for up to 85% of Maine’s sports betting market. That said, the licenses don’t come with astronomical fees.

They last four years and cost $4,000 each to retail operations, while mobile licenses will cost the tribes $200,000. Supplier and management licenses are retailed at $40,000 in Maine. LD 585 will also mandate a 10% tax on sports betting revenue, as well as a deduction of promotions and federal excise tax payments from taxable revenue.