Sports betting rules for Deadwood receive approval from South Dakota's gaming commission

Applicants for a license will need to pay $5,000, and employees won't be allowed to place wagers with machines owned by their employer. South Dakota's legislature passed a law paving the way for legalized sports wagering in Deadwood, after nearly 60% of voters approved the gaming last November. The law takes effect July 1.

Deadwood, South Dakota has held legalized gambling since 1989. (Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic)

PIERRE, S.D. — The first-ever legalized sports betting season in Deadwood, S.D., kicks off this summer, and regulations are coming forward.

On Tuesday, May 18, the South Dakota Commission on Gaming approved new rules for casinos to operate sports wagering games in the northern Black Hills town, months after the state enacted legislation legalizing sports betting in the town's limits.

Last November, 58% of South Dakotan voters supported adding sports betting to the suite of gambling options already approved for play and taxation in Deadwood, including poker, slots and blackjack.

The legislature beat back other attempts to expand sports gambling statewide, including one bill that sought to legalize betting at kiosks at bars or restaurants anywhere within the state, so long as they were digitally tethered to a server based in Deadwood.

According to the initiated measure approved by voters, sports betting was to be legalized "within the city limits of Deadwood," with net municipal proceeds funneled to the city's historic upkeep fund.


Commissioners on Tuesday approved a list of over a dozen rules, including requiring a $5,000 fee for applying for a license and banning employees from placing bets on machines owned by their employer.

The package of regulations was received with unanimous approval. They will go to approval to a rules committee in early June before being registered with the Secretary of State's office.

Roger Tellinghuisen, a lobbyist for the Deadwood Gaming Association , did ask for clarification on excise taxes, which the commission agreed to.

While the sports betting law takes effect on July 1, it is expected to be a few months before people can place bets.

"We're on track to get sports wagering up and rolling as quickly as we can," said Mike Shaw, attorney with the commission.

The commission will begin accepting applications for licenses beginning on Friday, May 20.

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