NFL Week 1 Launch For Kansas Sports Betting In Doubt
David Caraviello | 12 mins
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The Kansas sports betting bill signed in mid-May by Gov. Laura Kelly went into effect on July 1, with a launch by Week 1 of the NFL season "the goal", according to the Governor.
However, that target is looking a little more unlikely as September approaches. Instead, a launch around Week 2 or Week 3 of the NFL season may be more realistic at this stage in the process.
Kansas sports betting will be permitted through the four state-run casinos and Kelly has said negotiations with the state's four federally-recognized tribes to allow them to amend their gaming compacts to allow sports betting are "proceeding."
Kelly made those comments at the Statehouse on June 20 during a special bill signing ceremony attended by lawmakers and casino industry representatives. Kelly refuted the notion, however, that the state was trying to poach the Kansas City Chiefs from neighboring Missouri with this bill (80% of revenue is going towards luring a pro team to Kansas).
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According to FOX 4 Kansas City, Kelly told those in attendance at the Statehouse ceremony, "I have never approached the Chiefs, nor has anybody in my administration, so no… I am not doing that.
“And quite honestly, when you think about it the amount of money that this bill would generate and put into that fund, it would not come close to being what you would need to be able to attract a major league.”
The operator application window opens August 15 and Kansas sports betting is required to launch no later than Jan. 1, 2023, though all indications are it will be live either at the start of the NFL season or at some point this fall. A Week 1 launch is still possible but the tight timeline makes a Week 2 or 3 launch more likely.
Approval in Kansas continues a nationwide movement that has gained further steam in 2022 as state legislatures in all regions of the country race to try and keep sports bettors—and the tax revenues they generate—within their own borders.
That’s certainly been the case in Kansas, which has seen residents travel to neighboring Colorado or nearby Iowa—two states where sports betting is legal—to wager on high-profile events like the Super Bowl and March Madness.
And it gives Kansas an edge over neighbor and rival Missouri, where a bill died without a vote this spring (Missouri now has to wait until 2023 to try again). Bettors will certainly be looking forward to not traveling anymore and using one of the Kansas betting apps instead.
The Kansas Sports Betting Bill Explained
The Kansas bill allows both mobile and retail wagering to be overseen by the state’s lottery commission, with a minimum betting age of 21. It lets each of the state’s four existing casinos partner with three operators, such as Caesars Kansas, BetMGM Kansas and FanDuel Kansas.
Each casino can also partner with up to 50 retailers, who can offer betting kiosks (20% of kiosks need to be at fraternal or veterans' organizations). The four casinos can also request an additional "skin" for mobile betting if they partner with a professional sports team.
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Caesars, FanDuel and BetMGM are likely to launch, based on the fact they have pre-existing market access through various retail casinos across the state. Others with market access are DraftKings Kansas, Penn National Gaming's Barstool Sportsbook Kansas, PointsBet Kansas,, FOX Bet Kansas and Bally Bet Kansas.
The Kansas sports betting tax rate will be 10 percent, and 80 percent of revenue will go into a fund, which will be used to try to attract Kansas City’s pro sports teams to the Kansas side of the metro area, specifically the Chiefs - though Kelly is now on record dismissing that notion.
The bill also allows betting on college sports, or sports teams in Kansas—meaning that residents could wager on the national champion Jayhawks during college basketball season.
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Make sure to keep checking back to bookies to stay up to date on launch announcements and bonus updates.
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A Big Year For Sports Betting In 2022
The move by Kansas is only the latest in a flurry of decisions by state governments in 2022 to either legalize sports betting or expand access to legal wagering.
It comes on the heels of legal sports betting earning approval in Maine, where Native American tribes will have complete control over the lucrative mobile betting market. In March, Illinois at last dropped the antiquated practice of in-person registration, allowing sports bettors to create accounts online.
The launch of Arkansas sports betting occurred in March, following similar moves by Louisiana and New York in January. Ohio, which legalized sports betting in December, announced a "universal" launch will take place on Jan. 1, 2023 - the latest possible go live date in accordance with the legislation.
In Massachusetts, a legal sports betting bill finally passed the legislature after the House and Senate reached a compromise. In Canada, the nation’s most populous province, Ontario, opened its market to commercial sportsbook operators on April 4.
And the biggest prize in American sports betting, California, will have a mobile sports betting referendum (backed by BetMGM, DraftKings and FanDuel), and retail sports betting on the ballot in a November referendum. The retail-only sports betting initiative will legalize sports betting at tribal casinos and horse racing tracks.
Currently, 31 states have launched some form of legal sports betting, although in some cases the practice is limited to only a few tribal gaming facilities. Kansas and Ohio will expand that number to 33 when each launches.