DC Cherry Blossoms bloom in April but sports betting is starting to bloom in September!

  • Sports betting in Washington D.C. will not start before the NFL season begins.
  • Mobile sports betting will have a limited range.
  • The sole sports betting provider for Washington is Intralot.

WASHINGTON – The DC Lottery approved sports betting regulations last Friday.

Sports betting was legalized in the District of Columbia when Mayor Muriel Bowser signed DC B22-0944 back on January 23. Since then, the DC Lottery has been trying to figure out what regulations will fit the city. Now the Lottery has approved sports betting regulations.

The Regulations For D.C. Sports Betting

The approved regulations give us an idea on what sports betting will look like for Washington. There are going to be four main sportsbooks. They will all be located within sports arenas and stadiums.

On top of these four sportsbooks, lottery retailers in bars and other locations can also offer sports betting. There is a slight catch with this. These other retail locations must be within two blocks of a stadium sportsbook.

Licensing In The District

There are a couple of different licenses that a potential sportsbook can receive. One of them is known as a provisional license. Although Intralot is the sole sportsbook provider, sportsbooks can choose sportsbook operators. Operators such as DraftKings or FanDuel are free to operate in Washington. These operators have the ability to receive a provisional license.

Provisional licenses allow established sportsbook operators to operate earlier than anyone else. Since a company like DraftKings already operates in other states with legal sports betting, they could apply for a provisional license. Provisional licenses can then turn into a full license. Of course, there is a chance that the full license application will be rejected. If that is the case, the sportsbook must stop operations immediately.

New sportsbook operators can apply for a full sports betting license. Getting a full license takes longer than getting a provisional license. Provisional licenses take about 30 days to approve. Full licenses will take about six months.

On top of provisional and full licenses, the sportsbook licenses will be either Class A or B depending on location. One of the four main sportsbooks within a stadium will operate under a Class A license. Class A licenses cost $500,000 to receive. The other retail locations will have Class B licenses for a cost of $100,000. Sports betting will have a 10-percent tax on gross revenue.

Class B license holders can operate sportsbooks within many locations. Let’s say that a restaurant chain got approved to operate a sportsbook. Multiple establishments in that chain can offer sports betting under the same license. That would help ease the burden of the license and operation cost.

Mobile sports betting is also approved in Washington, but with restrictions. Mobile sports betting can only take place within two blocks of a Class A license holder. If a Class B license holder offers mobile betting, it can only happen inside of the facility.

Due to the timing, no sportsbooks will open in Washington D.C. before the start of the NFL season. The DC Lottery said that they will be ready for sports betting license applications in the upcoming weeks. It will also take at least 30 days to approve a provisional sports betting license. But it is predicted that D.C. sports betting will launch close to the start of the NBA season or before 2019 ends.

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