MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — In Wednesday’s State House Session in Raleigh, State Rep. John Autry, a Democrat from Mecklenburg County, got an amendment passed to a bill that essentially allows mobile sports betting in North Carolina, but his amendment takes out the ability to bet on college sports.
“What we do here today could create a black spot on our college sports programs in North Carolina,” he said.
For those watching what is happening in North Carolina on the issue, they know it could mean the bill’s chances of passing are not great.
Lou Monaco is with BetCarolina.com, a part of Gambling.com, which has a base in Charlotte, and noted the sheer business sense of sports betting, and college sports being a part of it.
“A lot of different companies are coming into the Charlotte area and provide jobs and opportunities for different people,” he said.
The issue of sports betting is not something that is divided along party lines — it is more along moral lines.
Many Republicans are for sports betting, but many are not.
Many Democrats are for sports betting, but many are not.
But taking college sports out of the equation in North Carolina would essentially take a big incentive out.
“You’re reducing potential tax revenue substantially, because betting on in-state teams is going to be huge,” said Bennett Conlin, a reporter for Sportshandle.com.
Conlin has been watching the debates on sports betting, state by state. He noted that many of the arguments are the same — specifically, that it would lead to a moral decline and an increase in gambling addiction, though there is not much evidence in legalized-gambling states to support that notion.
“Legalizing platforms in North Carolina is not going to impact (much),” said Conlin. “If someone wants to approach an athlete and try and have them throw a game, not having DraftKings in North Carolina is not going to deter someone from doing it.”
Lawmakers said there is still a chance of it passing, but not until next week, at the earliest.
“I don’t know what’s happening with this bill, but it’s not looking very good,” said Monaco.
State Rep. John Autry did not return a Queen City News request to be interviewed or comment for this story.