NY Sports Betting: Is Any Deal Worth It ?

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New York state lawmakers involved in budget talks on NY mobile sports betting legalization have been mum the past 24 hours or so.

That could mean that budget negotiators are razor close to a multiple-skins deal and don’t want to jinx it. Or, it could mean that a legislative push for a competitive mobile skins market under New York’s fiscal year (FY) 2022 state budget is falling apart.

Right now, it looks like it might be the latter, based on a press release yesterday from Deutsche Bank.

The multinational firm said on Thursday that it thinks New York mobile sports betting negotiations “could be heading in a direction that potentially leaves several operators somewhat pleased, most operators on the outside looking in, and the State of New York representing the undisputed winner.”

Can 14 Skins Still Win?

Deutsche Bank says a limited skins model run through the New York lottery is the more likely scenario. That is, if mobile sports betting makes it into the budget at all.

A lottery model is what Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed in January when he announced support for mobile sports betting legalization at the start of the New York state legislative session.

Cuomo’s model, says Deutsche, will likely mean a higher tax rate than the 12% tax on gross gaming revenue under a casino model proposed by New York Sen. Joe Addabbo and Rep. Gary Pretlow. “Considerably higher,” in fact.

The Addabbo-Pretlow plan calls for 14 mobile skins tied to upstate casino operators. Casinos under the plan could then partner with big-name affiliates like Yankee Stadium and Madison Square Garden to run sportsbook kiosks on their properties.

Deutsche Bank also expects a “very limited license model” at this stage. The Addabbo-Pretlow proposal would have raked in at least $168 million in licenses in the first fiscal year of operations alone.

The Look Ahead in New York

New York is now 20 hours past its deadline to have a state budget finalized and passed for FY 2022.

That could mean no deal at all on mobile sports betting legalization. Or it could mean extra time to get a plan just right.

Social media chat on Wednesday about New York mobile sports betting’s chances at passage this week seemed to favor a lottery model with one vendor, and very limited skins. The chatter today? That negotiations have soured.

Maybe things will be clearer tomorrow. Or Monday. We’ll see.

About the Author

Rebecca Hanchett

Rebecca Hanchett is a political writer based in Kentucky's Bluegrass region and covers legislative developments at Gaming Today. She worked as a public affairs specialist for 23 years at the Kentucky State Capitol. A University of Kentucky grad, she has been known to watch UK basketball from time to time.

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