Bodies That Take Part in Regulation and Stifling Both Legal and Illigal Sports Gambling

The importance of regulating legal sports wagering and illegal sports wagering has been acknowledged by professional and amateur sports organizations, which have strict regulations regarding sports wagering. For example, the National Football League, Major League Baseball, and the National Basketball Association have all issued rules stating that betting on your own sport is grounds for dismissal for any athlete or coach. Each league also offers referral services for treatment of problem or pathological gambling and other addictions. 34

The National Collegiate Athletic Association has adopted legislation prohibiting university athletics department members, athletics conference office staff, and student athletes from engaging in wagering activities related to intercollegiate or professional sporting events. Violations of NCAA gambling regulations carry stringent penalties. The NCAA also has created a full-time staff position devoted to agent and gambling issues. 35

Current NCAA initiatives recognize the importance of raising awareness of the problems associated with sports wagering and problem and pathological gambling. Television broadcast has proven to be a powerful tool for educating the public about the problems associated with sports wagering. The NCAA contracts with CBS and ESPN to run public service announcements (PSA’s) during the broadcast of popular sporting events, such as the Division I men’s basketball tournament. 36 In 1998, CBS, in conjunction with the NCAA, developed a lengthy segment on sports wagering that aired between the Division I men’s basketball semifinal games. These announcements are only a part of the larger gambling education programs that the NCAA plans to develop. 37

Stand-alone EGD’s are seldom well regulated outside Nevada. Because EGD’s can be placed in a wide variety of locations, they can be difficult to monitor. State regulation of convenience gambling includes licensing, regulation of the placement of machines within an establishment, age restrictions, regulation of operations, and taxation of revenues. States that permit convenience gambling have various methods of regulating the operation, distribution, and allocation of machines. Licensure is usually processed in state gambling commissions. An exception is South Carolina, where the Department of Revenue administers the machines. Applicants’ character, past criminal records, business competence, and experience is evaluated during the licensing process. In addition, the operation and number of machines is regulated, since many states allow only a limited number of convenience gambling machines in certain locations. For example, in Nevada, locations with non-casino gambling licenses may operate a maximum of 15 devices. South Carolina machine operators are limited to only five machines per “single place or premise.”

34 See Jeff Pash, Executive Vice president of the NFL, Testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Technology, Terrorism and Governmental Information, Washington, DC, July 28, 1997. 35 See letter from Cedric Dempsey, Executive Director of the NCAA to Commissioner McCarthy, NGISC, October 16, 1997, on file with the NGISC. 36 See letter from Cedric Dempsey, Executive Director of the NCAA, to Kay James, NGISC, April 28, 1999, on file with the NGISC. 37 Ibid. 38 Most commonly, “convenience gambling” is defined as any gambling activity that encompass various electronic versions of bingo, keno, blackjack, lottery, video poker, or any other electronic, electromechanical, or mechanical games that operate by chance and that award the player with game award credits or free games. It is legal in Nevada, South Carolina, Montana, Louisiana, Oregon, and South Dakota.