Delaware sports betting numbers rise again

    The State of Delaware gets more good news on sports betting. Interest in parlay bets on NFL games has yet to plateau.

    The State of Delaware gets more good news on sports betting.  Interest in parlay bets on NFL games has yet to plateau.

    For a third straight week, State officials report an increase in both bets and money wagered.

    Last week , the state’s three racinos accepted 32,193 bets with nearly $487,000 wagered – a 31 percent jump in both categories.

    Governor Jack Markell is pleased with the early returns.   “We are the only state east of the Mississippi which can actually offer this product and people are discovering it,  and its gotten better every week so far.  That’s a promising sign. ”  Markell said.  “People are coming to Delaware who might not otherwise come here.  So, I think its working out.”

    Officials have not released how much parlay betting added to state coffers this week, but in September, the state netted an average of just over $58,000 a week from sports betting in its first three weeks of operation.

    The State initially hoped to make $3 million in fiscal year 2010 from sports betting, but revised that estimate downward to $500,000 dollars when a Federal Appeals Court ruled Delaware’s plan for single game bets on all sports violated federal law, leaving Delaware with only parlay bets on NFL games.

    It now appears Delaware is on track to top that $500,000 estimate.  “We’re trying to  make the most of what we’ve got.”  said Markell.  “The bottom line is this is going to generate funds that we need to pay for services. We look for it to create jobs. We look for it be something that’s entertaining  and attractive to people.  So far, its turned out to be exactly that, which means we’ve got new people coming and checking out Delaware, which is great.”

    For an in-depth look at sports betting in Delaware tune in to  “First” , WHYY’s Delaware news magazine show.  It airs at Friday night at 10 on WHYY-TV.

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