North Carolina legislators have ushered through a bill to legalize sports betting, and Gov. Roy Cooper made it official Wednesday.
Cooper signed House Bill 347, Sports Wagering/Horse Racing Wagering into law, authorizing and regulating betting on professional, college and amateur sports and horse racing.
People — only those over the age of 21 — will have the option to place bets in person or as registered players online.
“This legislation will help North Carolina compete, make sure taxpayers receive a share, create many good-paying jobs and foster strong economic opportunity,” Cooper said in a press release. “As we move forward, we should work to make sure more of the revenue is used to invest in our public schools, teachers and students.”
The legislation charges the North Carolina Lottery Commission with regulating sports wagering; it will also be responsible for issuing licenses and collecting application fees.
Licenses — interactive, service provider and supplier licenses — will be valid for five years and cost $1 million. No more than 12 licensed operators will be able to take bets in North Carolina, according to the legislation.
Funds from the license fees and taxes of new businesses will be allocated to 13 public universities, school grant programs, and gambling education resources. Other money will be funneled to the North Carolina outdoor Advisory Council and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. It would also help bring major events and festivals to the state.
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