Five Maryland casinos are considerably closer to offering in-person gambling on sports after recently having received the green light from a state commission following a 5-2 vote.

The Sports Wagering Application Review Commission awarded in-person sports betting licenses to Live! Casino and Hotel in Hanover, Horseshoe Casino in Baltimore, MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Ocean Downs Casino in Berlin and Hollywood Casino in Perryville.

Customers could soon have the opportunity to place bets on-site for the first time in the state and in time for the NFL playoffs. However prior to this happening, each casino is required to sign a ‘memorandum of understanding’ and complete a number of procedural steps.

The five casinos will work with Maryland’s State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency who will ensure their systems of internal controls, standard operating procedures, surveillance and security systems and responsible gaming plans and employee training procedures are satisfactorily thriving.

Each operator is also required to perform a controlled betting demonstration while under observation by staff from the State Lottery and Gaming Control Agency with the Agency’s Director saying that he hopes to have the reviews completed within 30-45 days.

Frank Turner, a member of the Commission, voted against approval as he is concerned about the lack of women and minority-owned businesses involved.

Turner commented that they are only asking to be given a little more time, so that some of these minority and women-owned businesses can catch up and they can start at the same starting point.

Turner referred to Maryland’s medical marijuana program, saying they got left behind and that is what he is trying to avoid this time.

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