This story was published more than 4 years ago.
This week Rhode Island Senate President Dominick Ruggerio introduced a new bill that would legalize mobile sportsbetting within the state, which already offers the wagers at land casinos.
The bill, which is formally known as 2019-S-0037, gives the state the ability to allow the land casinos in the state (Twin River in Lincoln and Tiverton) to offer mobile sports wagers through smartphones and tablet. The bill would require punters to be physically located in the state to place the wagers, and geolocation technology would be required to ensure this. Accounts would need to be set up in person before the bets would be allowed on mobile, and the servers facilitating the bets would be located at each casino as well.
Mobile sports betting revenues would be subject to a 51% tax rate, which is similar to what is being paid for the physical wagers. The books in place are operated by both IGT and William Hill, and its likely that the two would power the mobile versions as well.
Speaking about his bill Ruggerio said, "The new in-person sportsbook that opened in November has been very popular, with lines stretching out the doors. Expanding to mobile gaming would provide a convenient option for those wishing to enjoy this form of entertainment, and open up the economic benefits beyond the walls of Twin River.
"It is estimated 97% of sports betting takes place illegally. This is an opportunity to give Rhode Islanders and visitors a legal avenue to participate in an activity they enjoy, while providing a very tangible benefit to our state."