Sports Betting Among Gaming Issues at UNLV Boot Camps

Posted on: June 11, 2021, 01:13h. 

Last updated on: June 11, 2021, 01:29h.

The UNLV International Center for Gaming Regulation has launched a series of online boot camps focusing on sports betting and other regulatory matters.

Las Vegas sportsbook
A patron at a Las Vegas casino sportsbook watches sporting events on television screens. UNLV is conducting a boot camp in July on the sports betting industry. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Joe Bertolone, the center’s executive director, told that the online seminars, or boot camps, are designed to help people in the casino industry with “nuts and bolts policy.”

Earlier this summer, the center held an anti-money laundering boot camp. Upcoming boot camps include one titled “Casino Investigations: Security, Law, and Policing,” and two others on sports betting. 

One sports betting seminar addresses the principles of sport wagering, including policy and operations. Another examines sports betting in tribal jurisdictions. Information about the sessions is available here.

With the nationwide growth in sports wagering, Bertolone said these sessions will explore a range of issues, from sports betting laws and history to terminology and enforcement.

Bertolone’s professional background includes his role as director of operations for the sports betting company William Hill US. He also was chief of the technology and administration divisions at the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

The sessions range in price from $595 to $1,400. Classes are conducted on Zoom and typically have 25-35 participants, he said.

The industry experts leading the sessions come from various backgrounds in gaming. For instance, one of the presenters in the “Principals of Sports Wagering” seminar is Becky Harris, former Nevada Gaming Control Board chairwoman.

Bertolone noted that while the sessions are educational, participants aren’t given classroom-style tests. At the end of the program, attendees receive a UNLV certificate of completion.

Sports Wagering’s Popularity

Sports betting has grown in popularity since a 2018 US Supreme Court ruling gave states the authority to allow sports wagering. 

Before then, a federal law that took effect in January 1993 limited sports betting to Nevada and three other states. The other states, which offered limited betting, were Oregon, Delaware, and Montana.

Sports betting now is legal in 21 states and Washington, D.C., according to the American Gaming Association. In nine other states, sports betting is legal, but not yet operational.

As sports betting has grown, most bettors are using mobile device such as smartphones to put money down on live sporting events. During the first two months of this year, 85 percent of sports bets nationwide were done on mobile devices, according to the Associated Press.

Some states with sports wagering, including New Jersey, allow online sports betting and in-person wagering inside casinos at sportsbooks.

Other states, such as Arkansas and Mississippi, offer in-person betting at casino sportsbooks, but not on mobile devices.

Louisiana Next in Line

Louisiana is the latest state on the path to legalizing sports betting. The Legislature on Thursday approved the final of two bills to tax and regulate sports betting in the state. The 2021 session ended Thursday at the Capitol in Baton Rouge. 

Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) has signed the taxation bill into law and is expected to sign the regulatory measure. Under these bill, sports betting will be allowed on mobile devices and in-person at sportsbooks and kiosks in casinos and racetracks.

Louisiana is home to 13 riverboat casinos, one land-based casino in New Orleans, and four racinos.