Which US State Will Legalize Gambling/Sports Betting Next?

February 28, 2022

The world of casinos is in flux right now. Many localities are seeking to legalize gambling and sport betting. Whether we are referring to casinos, racetracks, lotteries, or sports betting, gambling is regulated by a series of federal and state laws in the US. The states where this activity is allowed generally have an established commission to oversee and regulate all phases and methods of gambling, whether that’s in-person casinos and sportsbooks, online versions, or even things like the various NY mobile sports betting apps that are now out there. These commission entities handle everything from issuing licenses to representing players and employees who work in gambling.

States that allow casinos and similar forms of gambling often have strict zoning regulations to keep these establishments away from schools and residential areas. In addition, gaming establishments located on Indian reservations must comply with the federal Indian Gaming Act and any other tribal gaming regulations that may apply.

As legalized gambling continues to expand to more and more states across the country, it is hard to keep up with the latest bills that are in the process of being accepted or were already passed and are coming to fruition soon. Currently, a few states are making big moves when it comes to legalization. Whether it is the full legalization of mobile betting or just in-person ones made at select bookmakers, it looks like things are moving in the right direction for some states. So today, we’re going to talk about the ones that might legalize it next in the following years.


Wisconsin isn’t just a great spot to fish or ice-fish. It is also the next midwestern state to move forward with legalized gambling. The Oneida Nation and Governor Tony struck a deal early last year that allows bettors to wager at one location only. While it only offers in-person betting at this time, the fact that Wisconsinites can finally enjoy betting on their preferred team is a good beginning for the state’s complete legalization of retail and mobile gambling. So even if fans want to bet on the Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Bucks, or Milwaukee Brewers, they can freely do so at the Oneida Nation casino in Green Bay.


Nebraska also said yes to gambling and betting when they approved three constitutional amendments last year. Even though their legislature approved it, it will take a little bit of time for Nebraskans to start betting on their favorite teams from their phone or physically. Professionals were expecting first bets to start rolling in early 2022. Still, the dreams were shattered when the ice president of the Nebraska Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association said that it might not launch until the end of this year. Nevertheless, this is a big step for Nebraska, which had zero options for legal bets before the constitutional amendments were passed.  


Ohio is regarded as one of the most sports-crazed states out there for a reason. At the end of last year, Governor Mike DeWine signed House Bill 29 into law which means that sports betting will be legalized. However, bettors will only be allowed to place them starting with the 1st of January 2023 after further actions by regulators. This bill legalizes gambling and will allow restaurants, bars, stadiums, sports teams, and more to apply for gambling licenses. All this involvement is estimated to amount to $3.35 billion in revenue per year to the state’s funds. However, according to the local laws, bettors will still need to be at least 21 years old and be physically in the state — even when betting online.


As you would expect, the gambling market in Oklahoma is currently controlled by Native American companies that have opposed the total legalization of sports betting and gambling. Fortunately, the state’s lawmakers have recently passed a bill that will legalize sports betting at tribal casinos that will operate under specific guidelines imposed by the state. Unfortunately for players, only in-person bets will be allowed, with no hopes for legalizing mobile bets in the future.


It looks like out of all of the states, Texas might potentially legalize betting sometime next year. Sources state that due to the current demographic change that Texas is experiencing and the funding from outside sources, a new bill could be passed that would allow Texans to gamble with ease, probably from the comfort of their houses. Currently, the state does not allow any betting, and all of the previous intentions were halted.

Final Thoughts

There has never been a better year for gamblers from these cities. With time, more and more states will start legalizing gambling and implement appropriate solutions to keep it regulated and mandated. Considering that gambling is legal in a lot of other countries already, it’s about time the US catches up. These changes will generate quite a bit of income to the local budgets and allow hundreds of thousands to enjoy legal betting.

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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