Whenever gambling news features sports betting in the US, the term “Integrity Fees” come up quite a bit. It is a relatively new concept raised by sports leagues in the US since sports betting was finally allowed to be legalized mid2018. But what are integrity fees and why do leagues want them?
Integrity fees are basically just a cut or a percentage from the handle that sports leagues want to be given to them. Their argument, is that the wagers themselves will not exist without their leagues. So, they should at least benefit from it. Of course, operators are against this, since it will result in a reduction of their take. You can find some good bookie pay per head reviews to see which sportsbooks don’t cost a lot to maintain. But the call for an integrity fee falls on deaf ears. Especially when sportsbooks can easily argue that sports leagues do not need an integrity fee. After all, it is part of a league’s job to make sure that they have the proper resources to prevent controversies like game fixing.
Integrity Fees in US States
Since May 2018, there are 8 states so far that have legal and regulated sports betting. The list may grow as the new year passes by. Missouri and Ohio are two states who may join the list soon. Incidentally, both states say that they do not see a problem with giving integrity fees to sports leagues.
Ohio is eyeing a multi-state agreement that will grant the integrity fee of a fourth of 1%. The state asserts that this would be a great way to support the sports industry, and will increase the value of team franchises.
As for Missouri, Senate Bill 44 is already being discussed. This bill, if approved, will allow sports betting in floating casinos and online platforms. There will be a 12% tax on the adjusted gross receipts, plus a 2% administrative fee on the adjusted gross receipts, then an additional half of a percent for integrity fees.
The Missouri bill also asks for a $10,000 fee, plus $5,000 integrity fee for the Missouri Gaming Commission. The license fee of $10,000 will be for every time the license will be renewed as well.