Ohio will have a universal launch date for sports betting, meaning each operator will start at the same time.
While that exact date and who those operators are is still unknown, here are two things to keep in mind. The NFL season starts Thursday, Sept. 8, and the Ohio State-Michigan football game is in Columbus on November 26.
You have to believe sports betting might be available in Ohio by one of those two days. Gov. Mike Dewine set the date to be no later than Jan. 1, 2023, but rules have to be written, operators must be found, and software must be implemented.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission (OCCC) announced this week that the window for applying for a sports betting license will open on June 15 and close on July 15 for Type A, B, and C proprietors.
What does this mean for the start of sports betting in Ohio?
For the first time, the OCCC put out a timeline for operators, vendors, and suppliers who want to be approved for the launch date.
The application process will reveal just how many – and who – want a piece of what is expected to be one of America’s biggest sports betting markets.
The timeline released by the OCCC says June 1, the final application versions will be made available, with the window open for a month starting June 15.
On August 15, a second application window opens. Operators and vendors can still apply then but aren’t guaranteed the ability to go live on the universal start date.
Sixty days prior to the start date (unknown) is the submission deadline for all responsible gaming plans.
Within thirty days all equipment has to be ready for the OCCC to slap a verification sticker on it. The Executive Director will announce the universal start date.
What is the different type of sportsbook licenses for Ohio?
A Type A license in Ohio is marked for mobile operators and professional sports teams. B licenses are earmarked for brick-and-mortar sportsbooks, and Type C is reserved for self-service kiosks at establishments with liquor licenses.
Ohio will allow 25 Type-A licenses and 42 Type B.
Population or tourism figures will determine how many C licenses are granted in each county. There has been some debate on the limits the OCCC has imposed on kiosks (two) in establishments.
The OCCC is welcoming public comment from now until 5 p.m. Friday.
Sports betting in Ohio will see a tax rate of 10%. Professional sports teams and casinos can get two ‘skins,’ which cost $3 million for the first and $10 million for the second.
When will sports betting go live in Ohio?
That’s the big question. The OCCC said that the Batch 1 rules concerning the general provisions, including provisional licensing and certifying integrity monitors, must be submitted by June 1.
This is a long way of saying the rules are being put together in time for the applicants to review them.
Expect to see most nationally-known sportsbooks want to come into Ohio and submit an application.
More sportsbooks in one state are better for the consumer. It’s also telling that the OCCC said potential operators who apply in the second window might not be approved in time for the universal start date.
You start doing the math on days — counting at least 60 days from July 15 when the first window closes — and while Ohio sports betting may not be ready for September 8, it seems safe to believe it will be done in plenty of time before the Michigan game.
READ MORE: With Sports Betting On Horizon, Ohio Ponders Limits