North Carolina’s sports betting bill is making incredibly fast progress. The proposed legislation just made its way through its third committee hearing in two days.
Judiciary 1 is the latest committee to consider House Bill 347, which would legalize online sports betting in North Carolina. The group voted 7-3 on Wednesday afternoon to approve the bill during its meeting.
Judiciary gives the thumbs up
Wednesday was a busy day for HB 347. The bill passed through the House Finance Committee on Wednesday morning before making its way to the Judiciary 1 Committee on Wednesday afternoon.
The Judiciary meeting was a win for the sports betting bill despite some hurdles to clear.
Rep. Pricey Harrison, D-Guilford, introduced five amendments to the bill during the hearing. They would have accomplished the following tasks:
- Removing parimutuel horse and greyhound racing from the bill;
- Raising fines for online sportsbooks from $10,000 to $1 million, plus adding a three-strike policy for violators;
- Making it illegal for sports betting advertisements to air on school grounds, including universities;
- Raising the sportsbook license fee from $1 million to $10 million for a five-year license;
- Removing college sports betting and Olympics betting from the bill.
Rep. Jason Saine, R-Lincoln, the sports betting bill’s main sponsor, agreed that greyhound racing should be removed from the bill. He noted there’s already a plan to make that official next week. Harrison withdrew her first amendment because of that.
Harrison’s other four amendments all failed.
Her fifth amendment was the second attempt by a lawmaker to remove college sports betting from the bill. College sports betting has been a contentious issue, despite college wagering being available in most states with legal sports betting industries.
North Carolina sports betting soaring through House
North Carolina’s sports betting bill is clearing the House of Representatives at a breakneck pace.
The bill will be in front of its fourth committee, Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House, on March 28.
Assuming that hearing goes off without a hitch, the bill would head to the full House floor for its second reading later that day. That would tee up a third reading and full House vote March 29.
The bill is making its way through the statehouse at an incredible pace. March 29’s House vote would send the bill to the state Senate for its next batch of hearings. Considering that House bills have until May 29 to cross over to the Senate, the sports betting bill seems ahead of schedule.
Things might move just as quickly in the next chamber, but there’s no way to know. At the very least, sports betting hopefuls can feel confident now that the bipartisan bill is cruising through the House.