Bismarck, ND – There is a chance you can bet on your favorite sports teams in North Dakota soon.
Even on a Wednesday afternoon before a big holiday, people are at Stadium Sports Bar watching a game.
“I think it’s a great idea,” the bar’s co-owner, Scott Woodmansee, said when asked about legalizing sports gambling in North Dakota.
“The reality is, there are a lot of people doing it anyways. It’s just a matter of where they’re doing it. Knowing if you have them and give them that opportunity to say, hey it allows me to bet on the Eagles and Vikings game in the establishment where they’re at, yeah, it would be an enticing feature for some of these people,” Woodmansee said.
That could be an option soon.
“I will be bringing that to the 2019 session,” District 7 republican Rep. Jason Dockter said.
Dockter is writing a bill to legalize sports betting but for a cause.
“I just feel since people are already spending the money, why not have the money go to some of these local charities in the state of North Dakota,” he said.
His proposal would be to offer it as an extension of the state’s charitable gaming.
“Going through the charities is the way to do it,” he said.
Stadium already offers some charitable gaming.
“I just think this just adds more to it,” Woodmansee said.
And he’d like to give customers another option.
Dockter is working to come up with an estimate of how much money this could generate for charities. But it is definitely big business where it has been legalized, like in New Jersey. In October, people bet a total of nearly $261 million on sports there, raising the state’s total up close to $600 million. That has created $52 million in revenue for companies just since June.