For the last few years, experts have been predicting that sports betting would likely become legal in Ohio. And in December 2021, those predictions proved true when Ohio officially joined thirty other states in the U.S. to legalize sports betting.
Though sports betting will likely not start in earnest until early 2023, preparations are currently underway and will be here before we know it. States that have legalized sports betting have claimed it has helped generate tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue – but others have been asking whether the benefits outweigh the costs, particularly when it comes to the impact on their citizens.
In a survey published by Scioto Analysis, ten out of twenty-three academic economists said the economic benefits of legalized sports betting would outweigh the costs, while four said they expected costs to outweigh the benefits. The other nine remained uncertain.
Even the economists who said that the benefits would outweigh the costs acknowledged that problem gambling rates could rise as a result. But by knowing the risks and setting healthy limits, Ohioans can help to ensure that legal sports betting remains a responsible form of entertainment.
The stats on sports betting:
- Nationwide, problem gambling is twice as high among sports bettors, especially for those who play online.
- Almost half of the American adults have participated in sports betting.
- Fifty-seven million people play fantasy sports.
- Almost half of sports betting takes place online.
The Super Bowl and March Madness are also right around the corner, both of which are known for being huge events that generate an increase in sports betting nationwide. With these major events coming up, an increase in popularity of fantasy sports, and legal sports betting rolling out throughout the state, it will be important to keep Ohioans informed about the evolving issue.
You can access free and customizable educational sports betting resources at BeforeYouBet.org/community-toolkit/sports-toolkit/
You can also follow Before You Bet on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter during Problem Gambling Awareness Month in March to receive additional information and tips about responsible gambling.
If you believe you or someone you know might have a problem with gambling, free resources are available at BeforeYouBet.org/get-help/ or by calling the free, confidential, 24/7 helpline at 1-800-589-9966 or texting 4HOPE to 741741.