South Carolina House Rep. J. Todd Rutherford has presented a new bill that could bring legalized sports betting to residents. The measure, H 3095 Join Resolution is a constitutional amendment. This could see the launching of South Carolina sports betting and casino gambling within state lines.
Could Sports Betting Come To South Carolina?
This isn’t the first time lawmakers attempted to bring legal sports betting to the Palmetto State. During the 2022 legislative session, HB 5277 was proposed. This measure managed to pass in the House but died on the Senate floor without a vote.
Lawmakers are hoping that presenting this bill sooner would give time for it to be successful in both governing branches. The House is clearly on board with sports betting and gambling and now they have time to convince the Senate of the benefits.
Rep. Rutherford’s proposal would see local sportsbooks allowed to offer odds to all residents. The measure does not explicitly confirm how much the state would tax on sportsbooks. However, Rutherford was in favor of the 10% tax rate presented in the previously failed measure.
Local casinos would be allowed to offer typical gambling options. These include card games, table games, dice games, and other games of skill. There was no mention of slots in the bill. Also included was the allowance of parimutuel betting on horse races.
Will The Measure Pass?
It is too early to determine if the measure will be a success. South Carolina has failed to bring sports betting to its residents in every session. Additionally, neighbors in Georgia and North Carolina do not have statewide betting options. In many cases, pressure from neighboring markets’ success has worked as a motivator for lawmakers.
Georgia has no sports betting options and North Carolina only offers retail sports betting at two local casinos. There is little risk of local residents crossing the border and sending tax dollars to other markets.
However, North Carolina legislators have long worked to bring statewide mobile sports betting to its residents. NC is likely to push legislation again in 2023. Georgia lawmakers have also attempted to pass sports betting laws in the past.
Should either or both be successful in bringing sports betting to their residents, South Carolina could be pressured into acting as well. We will have to wait and see how things pan out.