Online Sports Betting Legislation Introduced in Hawaii

Updated On Feb 15, 2022 by Ella McDonald


  • Mizuno wants to provide consumer protection and regulate the industry in Hawaii.
  • The bill would tax online operations at 55%, which is on the high end for US operations.
  • The representative would like to see revenues put towards affordable housing and education.

A new gambling bill enters legislature in Hawaii this week, with Representative John Mizuno proposing House Bill 1815.

The measure would legalize online sports betting, allowing Hawaii to join more than 30 states in the US that offer the betting option.

Mizuno points out in his measure that the activity would bring more revenue to the state and bring the existing market into the light, providing consumer protections along the way.

Protecting Players from the Offshore Market

Currently in Hawaii, the only way to place a sports bet is through the offshore market. Several sites provide online sports betting services, but the operators are not licensed to offer betting in Hawaii, which puts consumers at risk. Mizuno wants to see his bill passed so that players are protected.


One issue with offshore sites is payment protection. There is no guarantee that a player will see any wins they earn from an offshore site. With a regulated industry in place, operators must adhere to certain protocols, protect players money and pay up when a win occurs.

HB 1815 provides insight on how the new industry would function, including setting a tax rate of 55%. If this rate stands, it means Hawaii would charge the most in taxes, something that might be off putting to operators. New York just launched its mobile industry last month and has a high rate of 51%, but Hawaii’s rate is even higher.

Mizuno compares his rate to New York’s and points out that the industry has already seen a ton of taxes paid. In Hawaii, such payments could go towards affordable housing and children’s education needs. The proposal would also see a portion of the revenue kept by the state to go towards gambling addiction and recovery programs.

A corporation would be created to regulate gaming, managed by the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. Currently, the new measure has finished its first reading and passed. Murino is hopeful that the measure will move into the committee next.

Several Gambling Bills are on the Table

Along with House Bill 1815, there are additional measures on the table concerning gambling in Hawaii. Right now, Hawaii and Utah are the only two states in the US that do not offer any type of gambling options. Legislators in Hawaii are trying to change that.

A few days ago, several measures were introduced to bring sports betting and casinos to the state. House Bill 1820 would bring a casino to Waikiki. It would offer a members-only option where patrons pay to enter. SB853 would bring a state lottery to Hawaii while House Bill 1973 would legalize land-based sports betting.

There are so many bills on the table, with several options under consideration. Will lawmakers be able to pass at least one option, or will Hawaii take a full swing and enter several markets with the passage of multiple gambling bills?

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Ella McDonald Author

Worldwide gambling related news stories are what you will find being written by Ella, she has a keen interest however in UK and European based new stories relating to all gaming environments, and she is always prepared to ask the difficult questions many other journalists avoiding asking those in power.

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[…] on a regular basis, only to fall short in committee or never even make it on the table. This week, several bills proposed in the state were declined, leaving the area yet again without any type of gambling […]