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Sports Betting Record Set in Virginia, More than $570 Million Wagered in October

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – New data released by the Virginia Lottery shows Virginians spent more than half a billion dollars on sports betting in October, setting a new record. 

The data shows that in October, Virginians wagered $571.4 million, the highest since legal sports betting began in 2021. Players in Virginia also took home $507.4 million in winnings in October. https://d-36201777102452248288.ampproject.net/2311212202000/frame.html

Jadrian Wooten, a Professor of Economics at Virginia Tech University, says the sports betting phenomenon was born out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“One of the really big things it did for people was put them at home, in front of their couches watching their TV, rather than going to games,” said Wooten. ”So at the same time, what we saw was a lot of people, for the first time, downloading the casino apps and starting to actually gamble on their phones. That was the first spike, and it has really taken off since then.” 

In Virginia, sports betting operators pay a 15% tax on their total gross revenue. In October, that totaled over $8.5 million, with most of the money going to the state’s general fund. 
“In the grand scheme of the Virginia budget, that is really, really small, but it is an extra $8 million that they didn’t have before,” explained Wooten. 

So far in 2023, sports betting has brought in over $58 million in tax revenue for Virginia. But despite the additional tax revenue, Wooten says sports betting isn’t exactly helping the local economy. 

“So, you are looking at 100 times the amount of betting happening on the apps, not on the casinos,” Wooten said. “And the problem for Virginia is those apps are not located in Virginia.”

Source: Wavy.com