South Carolina Considering Sports Betting

South Carolina could be the latest state in the United States to welcome sports betting to its jurisdiction after legislation was introduced at the statehouse in Columbia.

House Bill 5277 has been put forward and would allow mobile sports betting by state-based operators, with the South Carolina Lottery Commission then planning to award anything between eight to 10 sports betting licenses to operators.

As a result the licenses would see bettors have the ability to use state-based mobile apps as well as the current chosen method of betting on offshore sportsbooks in South Carolina. Although there are no major sports teams in South Carolina, the bill would allow residents to bet on both professional and collegiate sports.

The bill must be approved by both the House and Senate before going to Republican Gov. Henry McMaster, which is scheduled for May 12. The bill has been sponsored by Reps. William Herbkersman, R-Bluffton, and Rep. Todd Rutherford, D-Columbia.

Under the current terms, sports betting revenue would be taxed at 10%, while 80% of the revenue would also be funnelled towards the education lottery account. The legal betting age would be set at 18, while cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin would also be an option when wagering.

The Lottery Commission would hand licenses to professional teams with a facility in South Carolina, while operators behind Golf and NASCAR events could also hold a license.

Southern states have been notoriously difficult to convert into allowing sports betting, with there being just four SEC states that have made it legal for state-based operators. Those are Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi, with the other seven states still yet to pass.

Kentucky, Alabama and Georgia all saw legislative sessions fail to bring sports betting to their states outside of offshore operators, while an off-site mobile sports betting bill collapsed in Mississippi.