Ohio State Senator Kirk Schuring, in his weekly interview with Pam Cook on 1480 WHBC, said the state conference committee is making progress on the Ohio sports betting bill and may pass the document soon.

The conference committee is close to an agreement on what the bill should encompass, including the total number of online sportsbook apps available for bettors.

“Everyone wants to be a part of the market, and we’re just trying to get it to a point where we can have some semblance of order and get the bill passed. I think we will, soon,” Schuring said.

Progress on Ohio sports betting is being made

The legislative service commission has drafted bill language so others can take a look at the document as it’s continued to be negotiated. The operational and mechanical aspects of the sports betting bill, HB 29, are generally agreed upon by both legislative bodies. There will be three categories of sports betting licenses that allow for online sports betting, brick-and-mortar sportsbooks, and lottery-owned sports betting kiosks, he said.

It’s been a frustrating process due to the sheer length of sports betting negotiations. When the sports betting amendment was offered this past summer for HB 29, Schuring said it was unanimously approved by Senate members.

“We’re just trying to work with our House colleagues to get it to the point where it will be approved by both the House and the Senate,” Schuring said.

If the bill is approved by both bodies and signed by Gov. Mike DeWine (R), it would have to wait 90 days before it could go into effect. Schuring previously said the Senate will suggest the application start date for sports betting licenses be Feb. 15, 2022, and applications would be approved no later than April 30, 2022.

DeWine, long a proponent of sports betting, will likely sign a sports betting bill into law.

What would legalized Ohio sports betting look like?

HB 29 includes three types of sports betting licenses. Type A licenses include state entities that have the ability to bank a bet, such as the state’s 11 casinos and racinos, and will include online sports betting licenses. Type B licenses will be for future brick-and-mortar sportsbooks. Type C licenses allow for sports betting kiosks to be installed in retail establishments with D-class liquor licenses.

The bill allows for 65 total licenses; 25 online sports betting licenses and 40 retail sportsbook licenses.