North Dakota has introduced two separate bills in a bid to bring legal and regulated sports betting to the state.  House Bill 1254 and House Bill 1295 are almost a carbon copy of one another; the only difference being that HB 1295 also bans betting on amateur sports.

At present, the bills fit in with North Dakota’s current gambling framework that betting can only take place at tribal facilities or via charitable organizations; however legislators are also contemplating a change to the state amendment allowing gambling at other facilities. For this to happen, state residents need to vote on a change to the amendment in the 2020 ballot elections. As such, North Dakota is not likely to see broad changes to its gambling framework until 2021 at the earliest.

A point in favor of both these sports betting bills is that Governor Dough Brown has said that he will not fight sports betting legislation, should and if it lands on his desk.

North Dakota was not one of the states that analysts expected to see introduce sports betting this year, and they admit that it could be a struggle for the two house bills to advance. On the other hand, the state may start to feel the pressure from the competition generated by its neighbors. Both South Dakota and Minnesota will take up sports betting bills this month, which could lead to sports betting options in the Upper Midwest.

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