Earlier this month, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu announced that sports betting would be legal in The Granite State before the 2020 Super Bowl.
The Republican made an appearance on WEEI radio, Boston’s largest sports radio station, to tell listeners that sports betting will be operational in New Hampshire in late December or early January. If all goes to plan, the launch will be about six months after Sununu signed the sports betting bill into law.
Regardless of which month it is, the governor was speaking to one of New Hampshire’s target markets about when it will betting will be available. The New England Patriots are one of the favorites to represent the AFC in the big game.
According to the Boston Globe, Sununu took the opportunity to needle the Massachusetts government for having its own sports betting bill stall in the legislative process this year.
“It’s always baffled me why Massachusetts put the brakes on this one,” said Sununu. “We’re going gangbusters here.”
Gov. Charlie Baker introduced his own proposal for sports betting in Massachusetts last January, but it never gained traction. Sununu is hoping that his state will earn some added tax revenue from gamblers in Massachusetts that want to place a bet on a playoff football game involving the Patriots.
“Massachusetts seems to be this black hole, so we’re just going to pick up the slack until Massachusetts figures out what to do,” said Sununu.
If everything goes to plan, New Hampshire would join Rhode Island as the only New England states with sports betting. The Ocean State legalized the activity last year and was operational by the end of 2018. The state then legalized mobile and online betting last March. Maine also passed sports betting legislation in 2019 but isn’t expected to roll out a working infrastructure until later in 2020.
In the first 11 months of sports betting, the government of Rhode Island has collected $4.36 million in tax revenue. In September, operators in the state accepted just shy of $22.2 million in wagers and garnered a revenue of $2.52 million.
Sununu is expecting more tax revenue than Rhode Island. Early estimates have New Hampshire collecting $7.5 million in tax revenue for the 2021 fiscal year and $13.5 million when the market fully matures two years later.