It sure seems like we could be adding Vermont to the list of states with legalized sports betting in the very near future. There have been a lot of talks in Vermont since PASPA was overturned in the landmark Murphy v. NCAA decision, but things have never really seemed as close as they do in 2020.
In March, Vermont had a committee taking a deep dive into how sports betting would be set up in the Green Mountain State. The committee could end up taking an extended look at S 213, which is a proposal for sports betting that was filed by State Senators Dick Sears and Michael Sirotkin that suggested a mobile-only wagering method in the state.
Vermont does not have any land-based casinos, but does have a lottery. It would not be a shocker to see Vermont produce a similar setup to New Hampshire, which runs sports betting through the state lottery with DraftKings contracted as the sole operator.
On the other hand, Vermont may not want to tie itself to one operator and the proposed bill does allow for any and all operators to apply for licenses or skins. That could open the door for DraftKings, FanDuel, PointsBet, Fox Bet, theScore Bet, and other operators that are not tied to brick-and-mortar facilities. Generally speaking, operators like William Hill, Caesars, BetMGM, Borgata, Hard Rock, Golden Nugget, etc. like to align themselves with their own properties and retail sportsbooks. The fact that Vermont has no such facilities would mean that we would likely see a large push among the online-only brands.
Suffice it to say that Vermont’s potential tax windfalls are not going to be nearly as impressive as other states because of the limited population, but with sports betting legal in New Hampshire and in the retail sportsbooks of upstate New York, the goal would be to keep that money at home.
Tennessee could prove to be a good test case for states like Vermont that do not have any brick-and-mortar gaming locations. Tennessee is going live in 2020 with online and mobile sports betting with no land-based gambling. It would appear that Vermont would end up with a similar approach, just on a much smaller scale.
With the governor on board and what seems to be a very realistic set of proposals making their way through the state legislature, Vermont should be on the fast track to legalized sports betting. We’ll see if it happens in 2020 or 2021, but it will happen in one of those two years.
We’ll also have to wait and see which operators move to set up shop once things are officially announced and signed into law.
How Do I Bet on Sports in Vermont?
For right now, you cannot bet on sports in Vermont, however, legalized sports betting should be coming over the next year or so.
In the meantime, you can either get your feet wet or continue making your bets in New Hampshire via DraftKings or in upstate New York at the retail sportsbooks.
Massachusetts is very likely to start offering sports betting in the not too distant future as well, so that could be an option if Vermont’s government officials drag their feet on these proposals.
Much like the sap in the winter, it is a waiting game for Vermont, but one that does appear to be destined for a very positive outcome.