/ Gambling News / Maryland Online Casino Licensing Structure Gets More Inclusive

Maryland Online Casino Licensing Structure Gets More Inclusive

Maryland Online Casino Licensing Structure Gets More Inclusive

In a bid to enhance inclusivity and diversity in Maryland's online casino licensing, a subcommittee of the Maryland House has proposed significant amendments to Bill HB1319, led by Rep. Vanessa Atterbeary. These amendments aim to expand the potential number of online casino licenses from 12 to 25 while introducing conditions to ensure a fairer distribution among licensees. Notably, the amendments also prohibit the use of credit cards to fund online casino accounts and introduce measures to address problem gambling concerns. Although the finalized version of the amendments is not yet publicly available, discussions with industry sources shed light on their details. These amendments define social equity applicants and establish three categories of licenses to accommodate various stakeholders. However, despite these efforts, the legislation still faces challenges, including opposition from labor unions and certain casino operators. With the crossover deadline approaching, the fate of Maryland's online casino legislation hangs in the balance. If passed, the decision to legalize online casinos would be left to Maryland voters in the upcoming general election, potentially leading to a prolonged waiting period before the market launches. Similar complexities were observed in Maryland's online sports betting licensing structure, which delayed its launch. Despite these challenges, there is optimism for progress, albeit with cautious consideration for diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

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