June 9, 2023 2:02 am

Problematic social media posts have placed the chief Maine sports betting regulator on the sidelines, with the possible to delay the state’s rollout. 

The Maine Gambling Handle Unit placed executive director Milton Champion on paid leave final week, as initially reported by the Portland Press Herald. The action follows two social media posts this month with reportedly sexist and racist undertones.

The indefinite leave comes as the MGCU is in its second public comment period for ME sports betting guidelines. Champion not too long ago told LSR it would be at least till January 2024 for a launch. That timeline is now in query.

Champion’s social media troubles

The social media posts in query came from Champion’s Twitter account, @EDRegulator, which has 66 followers. He deleted the tweets.

The initially came on May well six as Champion lamented immediately after becoming told “ladies” was an unprofessional term. “In this day and age, I guess Bitches’ is greater,” Champion tweeted.

The second came on May well 14, when he responded to a tweet displaying a video of Patriot Front members marching in Washington with “At least they are not burning down cities and looting retailers.” The Anti-Defamation League lists Patriot Front as a white supremacist group.

How will this impact Maine sports betting?

The MGCU released its second batch of proposed regulations final week. Stakeholders should submit comments by June 16, but beyond that, the predicament is murky, according to Maine Gambling Handle Board chairman Steven Silver

“I’m hoping to have much more clarity about the predicament ahead of comments are due,” Silver stated, declining to comment particularly on the Champion predicament. “That will supply a clearer image as to whether or not there will be any delays.”

Champion previously told LSR if the MGCU moves forward with this draft, a launch by January 2024 is achievable. With Champion out, not too long ago hired deputy director Matthew Motti is at the agency’s helm.

Exactly where Maine sports betting sits

Gov. Janet Mills signed sports betting into law in spring 2022 following a number of years of legalization attempts, such as one particular work which Mills vetoed. Champion released the initially set of draft guidelines in January, getting much more than 500 comments.

In spite of the substantial feedback, Champion stated he would not overhaul the guidelines and would continue to take the approach gradually.

The director did, having said that, ease on the marketing regulations that initially necessary him to approve all Television advertisements.

Maine sportsbook ecosystem

There will be handful of selections for sports bettors in Maine anytime the sector gets off the ground. The 4 tribes in the state handle on the internet access, 3 of whom have partnered with Caesars

The Sports Betting Alliance stated Maine’s income-sharing agreement with tribes would retain member apps out of the state. SBA members incorporate BetMGM, DraftKings, Fanatics and FanDuel.

BetMGM has, having said that, partnered with a number of OTBs in the state for in-particular person sports betting. Churchill Downs Inc. and Penn Entertainment also run casinos in the state, which means TwinSpires and Barstool in-particular person sportsbooks are probably.

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