Advocates and small business owners in Chicopee are lobbying to allow sports betting at small businesses, such as keno parlors and sports bars. The Fair Play Massachusetts wants the state government to be fair to small businesses.
In January, Governor Charlie Baker introduced legislation that will make sports betting legal. Baker told gambling news outlets that it is a good opportunity for the state to invest in gambling. In addition, he said that legalized sports betting will make the state competitive with others.
Baker’s gambling bill will allow sports betting in existing slots parlors and casinos, including Encore Boston Harbor and Plainridge, and MGM Springfield. Also, it will allow them to accept bets on their own or through a third party with the best sports betting software.
Fair Play Massachusetts is not against casinos offering sports betting. However, they don’t want them to have a monopoly. People will go to sports bars to watch games. By allowing sports betting in the venue, it provides players a safer way to enjoy the game.
Small businesses will keep the revenues from sports betting within the state. Local businesses spend their profits in the state. On the other hand, casinos don’t spend their profits in Massachusetts. They give it back to their shareholders because that’s how they do business.
The Fair Play Massachusetts initiative is still in its early stages. Its spokesperson Ryan McCollum is confident that the state government will listen to them. Their hope is the final legislation will allow sports betting in small businesses across the state. That way it will help boost the local economy.
In addition, the initiative hopes that the legislature will keep local businesses in mind when they tackle the gambling bill. They hope the Governor and Treasurer will listen to their arguments as they finalize the legalization of sports betting in the state.