Photo Credit: PlayTenn.com
The Center Square [By Jon Styf] –
A record-breaking month of revenue for sports gambling operators in Tennessee led to $5.9 million in taxes in November, according to data from the Tennessee Education Lottery and Sports Wagering Advisory Council acquired by PlayTenn.
Eighty percent of the tax revenue from sports gambling goes to education, 15% goes to the state for distribution to local governments and 5% goes toward mental health programs, according to Andy Davis, the chief financial and information systems officer for the Tennessee Education Lottery.
Oversight of sports gambling in Tennessee shifted Saturday to the new Sports Wagering Advisory Council, which met Thursday morning.
Tennessee collects 20% of net operator revenue in taxes.
“Most states that have legalized and regulated sports betting have undoubtedly done so with additional tax revenue as the main carrot,” said Alec Cunningham, an analyst for PlayTenn.com. “Tennessee regulators made some missteps during their first year on the job, but ensuring that the state gets a fair share has not been one of them. They have set up a relatively balanced structure that has created a dependable revenue source without hamstringing operators.”
Tennessee sports books collected $36.9 million in gross revenue in November.
Since gambling began in the state in November 2020, operators have brought in $242.4 million in gross revenue that led to $41.4 million in taxes.
In Virginia over that time, $254.4 million in gross revenue led to $18.6 million in taxes collected by the state.
Football has continued to be the main driver in sports gambling totals. After $375.3 million in bets were placed in the state in October, the total fell to $365.7 million in total bets in November.
Average volume bet per day, however, rose from $12.1 million per day in October to $12.2 million per day in November, which had one fewer day than October.
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“Even with one fewer football weekend than in October, wagering grew, a sign that the wave of action over the last three months is sustainable beyond football season,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayTenn.com. “Sports books continue to expand their reach to new customers, and bettors are becoming increasingly comfortable with more diverse forms of betting. It is difficult to imagine a better season than the one that Tennessee sports books have enjoyed.”
About the Author: Jon Styf, The Center Square Staff Reporter – Jon Styf is an award-winning editor and reporter who has worked in Illinois, Texas, Wisconsin, Florida and Michigan in local newsrooms over the past 20 years, working for Shaw Media, Hearst and several other companies. Follow Jon on Twitter @JonStyf.