Maine is on the brink of welcoming legalized sports betting this coming November, with the Maine Gambling Control Unit (MGCU) confirming the buzz.
As shared by the MGCU, the draft of the final rules is in the works, targeting an official launch between November 5 and 15. Additionally, the state’s Attorney General is diligently reviewing the necessary guidelines for the betting sector.
The MGCU Executive Director, Milt Champion, mentioned that after the Attorney General gives the nod, the regulations will head to the Secretary of State’s office. Following a typical processing time of three to five business days, the approved rules will be available on the Secretary’s official site, marking the starting point of live sports betting.
Upon regulatory approval, the MGCU is set to award operational licenses to qualified contenders.
Casinos and off-track betting venues will be open for in-person bets, but the online sports betting realm holds a unique twist. This digital domain will be solely under the guardianship of Maine’s four federally recognized Native American tribes, granting them the authority to team up with mobile betting entities.
The trail for sports betting was blazed with Governor Janet Mills signing the bill in May 2022, which took effect on August 2 of the same year. The law offers each tribe the privilege to choose their partner, possibly leading to licensing for the Penobscot Nation, Passamaquoddy tribes at Indian Township and Pleasant Point, Houlton Band of Maliseets, and Mi’kmaq. With exclusive control over the digital betting landscape, this translates to a lucrative avenue for Maine’s Native American tribes.
However, on the other side of the spectrum, major players DraftKings and FanDuel have opted out of the Maine game.