Members of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board unanimously approved that state’s emergency sports betting rules, paving the way for a potential fall launch of Louisiana sports betting.

Gaming Control Board Chairman Ronnie Johns praised the attorney general and state police for bringing the emergency rules to the control board so quickly. The emergency rules, which will go into effect on Monday, Aug. 23, will be in effect for a maximum of 180 days.

Louisiana sports betting launch in the fall?

Johns noted that at the end of the legislative session in June he did not think the emergency rules would be approved this quickly.

“This is brand new territory for us in Louisiana. We are behind the curve with our neighbors to the east, obviously Mississippi, but we’ll try to play catchup very quickly,” Johns said during the meeting.

Johns, who was recently appointed to the Gaming Control Board by Gov. John Bel Edwards, said the number one question he’s received so far is “when is sports betting being done?”

“Just sit back and wait, it’s being worked on. It’s going to come and it’s being done in a compliant manner,” he said.

When the permanent sports betting rules are approved by the board they will replace the emergency rules. It is not expected that the emergency rules will remain for 180 days, as an attorney general representative believed the process of approving the permanent rules and regulations would begin in September.

Where will Louisiana sports betting be allowed?

Louisiana will allow 20 sports betting licenses, one each for the the state’s 15 riverboat casinos, four racinos (horse tracks) and one land-based casino. Each license will also include two mobile licenses, which could mean a potential of 41 “skins” for Louisiana online sports betting. The one additional skin would be allotted to the Louisiana Lottery Corporation.

Each facility applying for a sports betting license will be required to construct a retail sportsbook to be eligible.

Facilities with Class-A onsite consumption liquor licenses can receive a mobile wagering device, called a kiosk, to allow patrons to participate in online sports betting while in their facility. This would be run under the purveyance of the Louisiana Lottery Corporation and revenue would be taxed at 10%.

A sports betting ban on in-state collegiate programs was not included in the bill.

Sports betting will be legal in 55 of 64 Louisiana parishes that approved the measure in the November 2020 general election. In-person and online sports betting will not be permitted for residents living in the following parishes:

  • Caldwell
  • Catahoula
  • Franklin
  • Jackson
  • LaSalle
  • Sabine
  • Union
  • West Carroll
  • Winn