Tennessee sports betting tops $18M in taxes in 1st 6 months

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A mobile football game app is displayed at a Buffalo Wild Wings, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2019, in Las Vegas.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Mobile-only sports betting in Tennessee has brought in $18.5 million in privilege tax revenue over the first six months that wagers have been accepted, a regulator said Tuesday.

Tennessee Lottery CEO Rebecca Hargrove told the state’s Sports Wagering Advisory Council that the gross handle of bets placed has topped $1 billion.

She says that includes $2.8 million in tax revenue in April from a $172 million gross handle.

Seven sportsbooks are currently live and offering bets in Tennessee. Sportsbooks began taking bets in Tennessee on Nov. 1.

Eighty percent of the revenue goes into an education account that mostly funds postsecondary scholarships. Fifteen percent goes toward local government needs and 5% funds gambling problem treatment programs.

The advisory council also began discussions of how to take the reins of regulating sports betting from the lottery. A state bill awaiting Gov. Bill Lee’s signature would make the oversight switch.

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