Michigan is putting a bit of money where its mouth is when it comes to combating illegal sports betting.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer dropped her budget recommendation for Michigan’s 2025 fiscal year earlier this week and included was $1.9 million for “Internet Gaming and Sports Betting Regulation,” the document states.
“The growth of online gaming and sports betting in Michigan has increased the demand for gaming regulations and licensing operations, and these funds will expand the agency’s regulatory capacity and enhance protections against illegal activity,” the executive budget says.
Whitmer’s fiscal plan also includes a $4-million increase for the state’s Compulsive Gaming Prevention Fund and programs associated with that fund.
“Increased allocations of proceeds from internet gaming, sports betting and lottery funds will enhance the 24/7 Gambling Disorder Helpline and existing treatment options to assist those suffering with gambling addiction and related problems,” the budget states.
MGCB Executive Director Henry Williams supports @GovWhitmer's FY2025 budget, prioritizing responsible gaming and iGaming regulation. Increased funds will enhance prevention efforts and counter illegal activities. Full statement: https://t.co/Nwmur1m2Il— Michigan Gaming Control Board (@MichiganGCB) February 7, 2024
The budget proposals come as Michigan and other states have, at the behest of the legal gambling industry, cracked down on what they view as unauthorized or illegal wagering.
In Michigan, that included sending cease-and-desist letters last month to three online gambling companies that regulators deemed were offering their products in the state without the license they needed to do so.
The Michigan Gaming Control Board also proposed and is enforcing tougher rules for fantasy sports that prompted the shutdown of pick’em contests versus the house in the state.
Thanks for that
Michigan Gaming Control Board executive director Henry Williams has welcomed the governor’s funding proposals.
“As iGaming continues to grow in popularity, enhanced regulatory oversight becomes indispensable in protecting vulnerable Michigan citizens, preventing money laundering, and mitigating the risks of fraudulent practices,” Williams said in a recent press release. “The earmarked funds are essential investments in building a stronger, socially responsible gambling industry.”