Sports Betting In New York Is Funding Education


Sports betting has quickly become America’s new favorite pastime, as this activity is currently legal in thirty-eight states and the District of Colombia. New York joined the online section of this pack in January 2022, four years after the fall of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act. It should be mentioned that commercial casinos in NY allowed wagering on sports in 2013, but the initial retail NY sportsbook began operating in July 2019. In early 2021, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a state budget bill that included online sports betting. At the start of 2022, Internet gambling on sporting events became a reality for New York residents, with nine legalized mobile bookies functioning in the state.

Without question, budget shortfalls created by the COVID-19 pandemic affected lawmakers’ decision to allow this hobby to citizens, something that was more or less unavoidable, given that neighboring states had already embraced this form of gambling. Hence, it would not make sense for NY not to curb illegal gambling activities by capturing its share of the growing legal sports wagering market. In only its first twenty-four days of operation, this sector section created more than $63 million in tax revenues for the state via an app handle of $1.7 billion.

In June 2023, NYS’ Chairman of the Senate’s Committee on Racing, Gaming, and Wagering, Senator Joseph P. Addabbo Jr., announced that, per a report from the State Gaming Commission, mobile betting generated $1 billion for education through taxes from January 2022 to May 2023. In March 2024, Addabbo proclaimed that this figure had risen to $2 billion since the first gambling app in New York State Sports launched.

New York Gambling Tax Revenue Distribution

As stated above, a significant portion of NY’s tax gambling dollars go to education funding, funneled to public schools, colleges, and other educational initiatives. A section goes to programs aimed at addressing problem gambling, like in most regions with legalized gaming, meaning ones that aim to supply services to persons affected by gambling addiction, including treatment and prevention. Then, the state budget gets a slice to support various government services. Moreover, some funds are allocated to cover the costs associated with regulating and overseeing the online sports betting industry, and some are distributed to local governments/communities.

Unlike other legal forms of gambling in New York, state law did not define the state’s mobile betting rate. The high 51% rate was agreed upon by the license applicants when they went through the regulatory/approval process in New York.

State Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. has confirmed that the money allocated for education applies to SUNY and CUNY schools, statutorily for grades K to 12. These funds are primarily directed at improving education infrastructure and other credible state funding needs. Addaboo believes that the numbers this sector has created for the state will convince other NY politicians and lawmakers to be more prone to allowing interactive gaming (online casinos) and Internet lotteries in the state, which could provide novel revenue streams for transportation, healthcare, seniors, veteran groups, and other in-need parties. Interactive gaming, also known as iGaming, has gotten far less traction than remote wagering on sports in the US, with only seven US states permitting this hobby to residents.

Among the programs that assembly members hoped would get money from legalized sports betting in New York were youth sports nonprofits operated by the Office of Children and Family Services and various other sports-based youth development organizations that now get a seeded percentage from raked in sports wagering tax cash.

New Problem Gambling Proposal & Prop Wagering Legislation

Without question, gambling addiction is serious business, as the National Councill on Problem Gambling estimates that around 1% of the US population, or 2.5 million Americans, suffer from this affliction, which gets categorized by an overwhelming urge for people to wager despite an awareness of the consequences this activity may bring. According to data from New York’s Council on Problem Gambling, 7% of active NY gamblers can get labeled as pathological bettors, and 4% are at risk of developing this condition. Those are not horrible figures, all things considered, given that in Nevada, 2.7% of the general population has a gambling disorder.

Sen. Joe Addabbo Jr. thinks it is reasonable for a novel Senate budget proposal to pass, one listing that at least $6 million from gambling tax money, or 1% of all revenues, should get directed to gambling addiction services. He is also a massive proponent of new legislation that seeks to bring proposition wagering to the Empire State. That betting genre offers various wagering options, allowing gamblers to wager on specific occurrences within the game. If accepted, that would open the door for NY bettors to put money down on pre-game coin tosses, MVP awards, the Super Bowl Gatorade dump, etc. In Addabbo’s eyes, permitting this would make New York an even more attractive and competitive sports betting market, and there is no reason why this should not get allowed here within a safe measure.

Ashley Grace

Ashley Grasse is a research writer and casino entertainment expert. She’s interested in game theory and strategy. Ashley writes online casino reviews and blogs about trending topics in the gambling industry. In the years she’s been writing at OUSC, she’s earned a reputation for her deep dives and thorough research. You can also find very quirky and entertaining pieces authored by Ashley.

She loves to the outdoors hiking, kayaking, and a good slot experience in Las Vegas.

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