Sports bettors west of the river have been out of luck lately as the sportsbook at Santa Ana Star Casino and Hotel has been closed since the end of September.
New Mexico’s first sportsbook is unable to operate because its odds provider, Nevada-based USBookmaking, let its license expire. The paperwork has been filed and the license should be approved, but the timetable for when Santa Ana’s sportsbook can re-open is uncertain. For now, Santa Ana is unable to take new bets while winning tickets can be cashed at the window in the sportsbook.
Santa Ana became the first casino in New Mexico to take a legal sports bet on Oct. 16, 2018. USBookmaking has been its odds provider since the casino announced it would open a sportsbook that year.
The move to open the sportsbook came after a May U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, essentially dropping the federal restrictions on sports betting and leaving it up to state laws or, in the case of the Pueblo of Santa Ana, an interpretation of the individual gaming compacts.
Santa Ana was the first to take advantage of the ruling, but Hilton Buffalo Thunder Casino in Santa Fe, Inn of the Mountain Gods in Mescalero, Isleta Resort & Casino in Albuquerque and Route 66 Casino in Albuquerque have all opened sportsbooks.