Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has stated publicly time and again since last May that he will push hard for legalized sports betting in the state. Baker backed up that promise on Thursday as he announced he will file legislation.
“Our legislation puts forth a series of commonsense proposals to ensure potential licensees are thoroughly vetted and safeguards are in place to protect against problem gambling and illegal activity,” Baker said in a statement.
The goal for all involved will be to get a bill passed before the start of the next NFL season in September 2019. DraftKings co-founder Matt Kalish told MetroBet last fall that he expected his home state of Massachusetts to act fast.
“I think Massachusetts will be one of the earliest states (to legalize),” Kalish said in an interview with MetroBet. “A lot of the northeast states will be the fastest moving. We’re based in Mass. We will love to see that market become lega. It would be great for us on several levels, including that it will enable us to do the job hiring in our home state. There are a lot of benefits in Mass., and we’re optimistic it will happen in 2019.”
This figures to be great news for the new Wynn Casino in Everett as well. Wynn’s “Encore Boston Harbor” is set to open in June and has build-in capabilities to run a retail sportsbook. MGM Springfield, which opened last fall, could also move quickly on opening a book.