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Is Arkansas Online Sports Betting Poised for Approval?

Mitchell South

by Mitchell South in Sports Betting News

Updated Feb 16, 2022 · 8:17 AM PST

Arkansas Razorbacks
Arkansas guard Jalen Tate (11) against Alabamas during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Fayetteville, Ark. Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Woods)
  • Arkansas legislators are discussing an online sports betting law
  • A vote on the Arkansas online sports betting bill is expected on the morning of Thursday, Feb. 17
  • State is discussing a rule that would require online sportsbooks to give local casinos 51% of profits if they’re partnered

The approval process for Arkansas online sports betting could be completed in the coming days, as legislators are set to vote on a bill that would legalize sportsbook apps across the state.

A hearing is scheduled for the morning of Thursday, Feb. 17 where legislators and the Arkansas Racing Commission will likely vote on this pivotal sports betting bill.

Catch all the details on these exciting developments for the Arkansas online sportsbook market here.

Vote on Arkansas Online Sports Betting Bill Expected Feb. 17

Arkansas state legislators and the Arkansas Racing Commission have been working towards this vote since December 2021. The hope was to launch before Super Bowl LVI, however the vote was pushed back to this week. Regulators will likely be pushing to have online sportsbooks launch in Arkansas in time for March Madness.

The official hearing has been recessed until the morning of Thursday, Feb. 17. If the vote is approved, Arkansas could have up to two online sportsbooks per casino go live in the state. An official launch date for these potential online sportsbooks is unknown at this time. More details should emerge if and when the sports betting bill is passed during tomorrow morning’s hearing.

Arkansas Online Sportsbooks Might Need to Split 51% of Profits

A potentially controversial rule for online sportsbooks is at the heart of this vote. State legislators and online sports betting representatives have been discussing the possibility of having sportsbooks share 51% of their profits with local casinos if they have agreed to an official partnership.

If the Arkansas sports betting bill is passed tomorrow, the state could have a total of two online sports betting platforms per casino go live in the near future. Arkansas has a total of three casinos:

  • Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort
  • Saracen Casino Resort
  • Southland Casino and Racing

If two sportsbooks partner with each of these casinos, Arkansas could see a total of six online sports betting sites go live in the state. Still, the 51% profit share might make some operators hesitant to enter into a partnership.

No official partnerships have been announced yet, and it is unclear which sportsbooks might get the nod, although major operators like FanDuel, Caesars Sportsbook, and DraftKings will likely be the favorited contenders.

Online AR Sports Betting Could Launch for March Madness

If tomorrow’s hearing leads to an approved vote on the Arkansas online sports betting bill, mobile wagering could go live in time for March Madness.

A potential timeline is unclear at this point, but after missing out on the Super Bowl, regulators will likely try to get everything up and running for the big tournament. Stay tuned to Sports Betting Dime for all the latest details on Arkansas online sports betting.

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