Connecticut has become the newest US state to start sports betting. The state Senate passed the bill, HB 6451, which empowers Gov. Ned Lamont to finalize a deal with the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes.

The bill also enables the Connecticut Lottery Corp. to provide in-person and online sports betting, online keno and online lottery games. The Lottery Corp. can also maintain up to 15 licensed in-person sports betting outlets.

The governor stated that he expects to sign the bill in the next few days, subsequent to which the administration and the tribes will request permission from the Bureau of Indian Affairs at the U.S. Department of the Interior to amend the state’s compact with the tribes.

The governor also opined that the bill “modernizes Connecticut’s gaming landscape … and is in the best interests of the state of Connecticut and its citizens.”

State Sen. Tony Hwang, a strong opponent of the bill, has a differing opinion:

“Following a year of incredible challenges, this is exactly the wrong time to put a virtual casino in every home in the state.  According to gambling addiction professionals, the rate of problem gambling disorders, and the resulting social and personal financial problems, increases for online players, especially for those experiencing anxiety, isolation and depression.”