New Tennessee Sports Betting Rules Advance Through Rulemaking Committee

Posted on August 18, 2021

The Rulemaking Committee of the Sports Wagering Advisory Council (SWAC) met on Wednesday, Aug. 18 to review proposed revisions to Tennessee sports betting laws.

The committee will present these updated recommendations to the SWAC during next week’s meeting.

Then, the rules will open to public discussion.

Rulemaking Committee reviews Tennessee sports betting rules

The committee, comprised of SWAC members Tom Lee, Samuel Lee, and Kandace Stewart, met to continue the discussion of rule adjustments from their previous meeting on Aug. 9.

Chair member Tom Lee followed the agenda, outlining a number of edits, each of which focused on three primary rules.

Rule 15.1 concerns sports gaming license standards. The committee reviewed minor adjustments to these guidelines.

One of these changes included a small revision to the definition of “vendor”. Also listed within this rule are the definitions for parlay and proposition wagers.

Tom Lee noted that the committee will meet with experts on betting before changing these two definitions.

The second rule up for discussion, Rule 15.2, addresses the method for resolving license disputes. Minor procedural changes were added and language was cleaned up regarding the grounds for revocation of a license.

Rule 15.3 deals with minimum internal control standards. For instance, key personnel must be properly vetted in instances where a change of control occurs. The committee also updated wording as to how, when, and why applicants should undergo background checks.

Additional regulation updates

Tennessee Education Lottery Vice President Alonda McCutcheon announced during the meeting that the TEL Board approved the use of prepaid gift cards for sportsbook deposits.

Once in effect, bettors must purchase these cards with cash, not a credit card.

Tennessee’s 10% hold requirement was also an item of discussion for the committee.

The committee confirmed the proposed changes to this rule that were discussed previously. It will recommend to the SWAC that the 10% mandate stay in place. However, the committee wants penalties to be assessed on a quarterly basis, rather than an annual one.

Currently, operators can’t be fined any more than $25,000 per year for failing to meet the 10% minimum hold. The committee wants to hold assessments on a quarterly basis, which would make operators liable for up to $100,000 in penalties each year.

New Tennessee sports betting rules advance to SWAC

After reviewing each rule’s proposed changes one final time, the Rulemaking Committee made a motion to approve the adjustments.

The Sports Wagering Advisory Council will hold its next meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 24 at 11 a.m. CT. During that meeting, the committee intends to present these proposed changes to the rules.

Once the council reviews and votes on these updates, the rules will advance to public discussion. By involving the public, the committee hopes to encourage a transparent rule-making process.

If the schedule continues accordingly, public comment periods will begin in September and October.

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Alec Cunningham

As a college athlete, Alec Cunningham played Division II golf at Tusculum University. She graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Professional Writing. She then returned to her love of written word in 2000 after working in the music industry as a concert promoter, tour manager and artist developer. As a journalist, she's covered a variety of topics and currently specializes in Tennessee online sports betting and Virginia casino news. She served as a panelist at this year's All American Sports Betting Summit, discussing the ever-evolving role of women in the gambling industry.

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