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Missouri Sports Betting May Be Placed On November Ballot

a voting station next to an image of MO's shape

It’s all about the education funding in Missouri when it comes to domestic sportsbooks. At least that’s what a legislative initiative called “Winning for Missouri Education” is selling when seeking the necessary signatures to launch a public vote to approve local sports betting.

The effort is being helmed by MO’s professional sports franchises – the Chiefs, Royals, Blues, Cardinals, and the state’s two MLS teams. At least 171,000 signatures would be required to place legal sports betting in Missouri on ballots for this November.

The good news is that they anticipate over 300,000 signatures will be collected, and the group is still pushing for more up to the May 5th deadline.

“As the campaign approaches our goal of putting this on the November ballot, Missouri is a step closer to allowing Missouri adults to bet on sports, while generating tens of millions in annual funding for our classrooms.”

Jack Cardetti – Spokesperson For Winning for Missouri Education

Missouri’s two major metropolitan regions are adjacent to states where sports betting is legal. Kansas City rests on the border of MO and KS. Locals can make a short drive into Kansas and use their sports betting apps to place a wager.

The same situation is present in St. Louis. Illinois is within a stone’s throw of city limits, and all Missourians have to do is venture across state lines and use their smartphones to bet on sports.

This scenario is not unique in the United States. MO belongs to a narrowing minority of US states that do not feature online, mobile, or in-person sports betting. There are only twelve states that have yet to legalize domestic sportsbooks, and only two of them – Alaska and Hawaii – are not bordered by a region where they are regulated.

Legislative efforts in prior sessions have been fruitless, mostly due to the inclusion of video lottery terminals in the bill language. Lobbying blockades from local casinos have also aided in MO’s sluggish progression.

If the initiative is approved, each of Missouri’s casinos would be permitted to launch in-person and online/mobile sportsbooks. The Missouri Gaming Commission would be designated as the regulatory body.

A 10% tax rate will be applied to all revenue generated by sports betting. Obviously, a large chunk of the proceeds are dedicated to the state’s school system, with a portion set aside for problem gaming support.

Polling studies have shown that a majority of MO voters hold a favorable stance. However, this will be moot if the group doesn’t submit the required signatures to the Secretary of State by May 5th.


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