Sports Betting

House Bill 774 is now labeled as ‘dead’ on the Mississippi Legislature website

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Mississippi House Bill 774

A conference committee was formed earlier this month to help find a compromise in House Bill 774. The legislation is looking to establish the Mississippi Mobile Sports Wagering Act. That would allow residents 21 and older to place bets on online apps. It would cut out the hassle of having to drive to a physical casino location to make a wager. 

Despite the committee meeting, they failed to find an agreement before the 4/29 deadline. On the Mississippi Legislature website,  House Bill 774 is now labeled as “dead”. For another year, Mississippi has failed to legalize online sports betting. Sports betting is legal and the Magnolia state has nearly 30 casinos. However, wagers must be placed inside the casinos or mobile on casino property.

There is an interest in Mississippi to enable statewide online wagering

Data from a technology company called GeoComply showed some intriguing information. They noted that more than “1.7 million Mississippi-based attempts to access legal sportsbooks outside the state over a little less than two months of the football season.” 

The demand for online sports gambling in Mississippi is real. Until the state makes it legalized, offshore and illegal markets are going to profit off the money. Mississippi lawmakers will have to discuss the legalization of mobile sports wagering again next year. Representative Casey Eure noted that Mississippi is the #1 for illegal online sports betting across the country. Not a reputation they want to keep up.

Will 2025 finally be the year that Mississippi legalizes mobile sports wagering?

Last year, a task force was formed to help address the issues with the legalization of mobile sports wagering in Mississippi. They tried to find multiple avenues for the state to successfully make it legal. The task force published a report and made projections and policy considerations for lawmakers. One of their main concerns was state tax if mobile sports wagering became legal. 

Additionally, brick-and-mortar casinos are worried that they are going to lose considerable revenue when mobile sports wagering is legalized. That was a major reason why lawmakers voted to not pass House Bill 774. Mississippi is one of 20 states that doesn’t have statewide mobile sports wagering.

Gaming commissioner Jay McDaniel thinks Mississippi is losing revenue by not having mobile sports wagering legalized

Speaking with Super Talk Mississippi News, McDaniel had this to say regarding the legalization of mobile sports wagering.

We would definitely see an increase in revenue just because it would reach all corners of the state,” McDaniel said in February. “I believe we would capture some from a state like Alabama that doesn’t have it right now legally.”

Mississippi brings in less revenue than most states that offer sports betting fully. That’s why McDaniel feels the state is missing out on revenue that could be made from mobile sports wearing. After missing the deadline on 4/29, citizens will have to wait another year unless the governor calls a special session. That’s highly unlikely to happen.