Featured in this article:
  • House bill would allow Kansas sports betting through the state lottery.
  • Proposal would regulate in-person and mobile wagering.
  • Differences in tax rates between House and Senate proposal could sink any progress.

3 Minute Read

Kansas guard Dajuan Harris Jr. signals to teammates during a first round game against Texas Southern in the NCAA college basketball tournament in Fort Worth, Texas, Thursday, March 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

After significant deliberation, lawmakers unveiled a Kansas sports betting bill in the state House of Representatives. The bill is backed by many competing industries that previously failed to unite behind one sportsbook regulation scheme. However, the state’s greyhound racing industry remains in opposition over their facilities being closed off from betting expansion.

The newly introduced bill, HB 2740, was unveiled by the Federal and State Affairs Committee led by Rep. John Barker (R-Abilene). It would allow Kansans to have access to in-person sportsbooks and mobile wagering apps.

Lottery Would Regulate Kansas Sports Betting

Though Kansas lawmakers have discussed introducing a 2022 sportsbook bill since as far back as November, those proposals centered around allowing the state’s four casinos to control sports betting. Now, HB 2740 grants the Kansas Lottery regulatory control of the nascent wagering industry. In that way, it is more akin to Senate sportsbook bills revealed earlier this year.

Kansas Capitol sports betting

The Kansas Statehouse in Topeka has seen debate on a sports betting bill the past few days. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

If HB 2740 became law, the Lottery would be allowed to partner with casinos and mobile sportsbook operators to offer wagering. However, in-person betting would be allowed not only at the casinos, but also in convenience stores and at racetracks. The non-casino locations would not feature full-service sportsbook windows but keno-like betting machines instead. Additionally, Sporting KC’s Children’s Mercy Park could host betting kiosks.

Shut out of the House proposals are greyhound racetracks statewide and the Kansas Speedway. The Kansas Greyhound Association testified in opposition to the bill due to this exclusion. Though no greyhound racing is currently scheduled in the state, the Association hopes to revive the industry and views sports betting kiosks as a viable pathway.

The Association’s spokesperson noted that Phil Ruffin, a Las Vegas casino owner, owns a facility in Sedgwick County that would be allowed to host betting kiosks despite formerly being a greyhound track. The shuttered Wichita Greyhound Park would be revived under the plan, without dog racing. Ruffin offered his testimony in support of HB 2740.

Kansas Sportsbook Tax Rates at Issue

On Tuesday, the Federal and State Affairs Committee voted to slow movement on the Kansas sports betting bill to further study proposed tax rates. Under HB 2740, in-person wagering would be taxed at 14%, with online sportsbook revenue having a 20% tax rate.

Kansas has corresponding Senate sportsbook bills that are still under consideration that propose tax rates of 5.5% on retail betting and 8% of online sportsbook revenue. The significant difference between the proposals could result in revenue projections for the measures differing by millions of dollars. The two chambers would need to reconcile the figures before a single bill had a chance of advancing.

Kansas is part of the last major corridor of the country to not get fully onboard with sportsbooks. While the Dakota’s offer limited in-person wagering options and Nebraska will soon have retail sportsbooks, Kansas is the only state currently considering much more popular mobile betting. That includes the states to Kansas’ south, where Oklahoma is considering allowing wagering at tribal casinos and Texas remains firmly opposed to betting.

Joseph Ellison

Joseph is a dedicated journalist and horse racing fanatic who has been writing about sports and casinos for over a decade. He has worked with some of the UK's top bookmakers and provides Premier League soccer tips on a regular basis. You'll likely find him watching horse racing or rugby when he isn't writing about sport.

Back To Top
Back To Top