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The Journal Gazette

Friday, May 31, 2019 1:00 am

Sports betting might start Sept. 1

Official: 'Aggressive timeline'

NIKI KELLY | The Journal Gazette

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Gaming Commission met Thursday with the goal of rolling out newly legalized sports wagering by Sept. 1.

With a little luck, that means Hoosiers would be able to legally bet on the NFL's kickoff game between the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers on Sept. 5.

“September is a very aggressive timeline for launch. We are making no promises. It is a goal we are striving to reach,” said Sara Gonso Tait, executive director at the commission.

She added that a two-tier launch might occur – first with in-person sports wagering at casinos, horse tracks and off-track betting parlors followed by online mobile betting.

Lawmakers in April legalized sports betting in the state after a 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

A casino or racino operator can apply for a certificate of authority license starting July 1. Vendors can also apply to conduct the wagering on the operator's behalf.

To bet, a person must be 21 and located in Indiana. Commission staffer Dennis Mullen said geofencing technology allows vendors to block people outside Indiana.

The new law prohibits betting on high school or youth sports. In-play wagering is permitted if approved by the commission. These are bets during a game on what might happen next.

Tait said she has received counsel from several states that have moved forward with sports wagering and six staffers are headed to New Jersey for a learning visit. Applications and emergency rules are being drafted for approval.

nkelly@jg.net