Backed by the Canadian Gaming Association, one candidate from Windsor West is hoping to bring single-game sports betting to Canada. Sandra Pupatello, a liberal candidate, made remarks that she would like to get a law passed that would allow for single-game sports betting in Canada. It’s a move that her competition in the NDP (Brian Masse) has been unable to do thus far. It’s a move that Pupatello and her supporters say would keep Canada competitive in the sports gambling market, and allow the country to reap the benefits of legal sports betting, rather than missing out. There has been a lot of speculation as to how much single-game sports betting is worth in Canada. Those against the bill say the figures are overblown and drawn out. However, one only needs to look to Canada’s neighbor to the south to see the popularity of sports betting.
In May 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a law that banned single-game sports betting in all but four states. Since then, many states have legalized a form of sports gambling, and the players have come out in droves to place bets. The U.S. capitalizes on that with a significant increase in tax revenue.
The CGA estimates that there is $10 billion wagered every year on sports through illegal sports bookmaking outfits that are located in Canada. The association estimates that another $4 billion annually is wagered on sports through online offshore sports betting sites. Only $500 million is wagered legally on sports in Canada through legal means.
That’s an awful lot of money that is being wagered elsewhere that Canada cannot capitalize on — either from a tax perspective or from a jobs perspective.
As Pupatello said: “We need to change our laws to allow for single-sports betting in order to be more competitive and capture more of the revenue that is currently going offshore or to unregulated or illegal beneficiaries.”
In addition to the substantial increase in revenue possibilities — which the association estimates could reach $1 billion each year — the CGA says legalizing single-game sports betting in Canada would have a very positive effect on the jobs market as well.
Legalizing the practice would add 150 jobs in Windsor, the CGA estimates, and another 100 in Niagara Falls. Across the country, the CGA says single-game sports betting legalization could add 1,000 to 1,500 jobs, as all provinces take advantage of the opportunity to open sportsbooks and sports betting outfits.
Currently, legal Canadian gaming is responsible for roughly 182,500 jobs in the country, and they all provide a good salary, the CGA says. The total revenue right now of $9.1 billion partially goes to fund government and community programs, First Nations initiatives and other charitable causes.
Paul Burns, the president and CEO of the CGA, further explained the association’s stance: “Let us not lose sight of how one small change can drive enormous benefits to the Canadian gaming industry, Canadian communities, as well as Canadians, who just want to be able to bet on the outcome of the Stanley Cup, NBA Finals or World Series.”
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