Maryland Lottery and Gaming Forwards Two More Sports Wagering Applicants to SWARC

Oct. 21, 2021

Hollywood Casino, Ocean Downs Casino join three other locations awaiting license awards

(Baltimore) — The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission (MLGCC) today determined that Hollywood Casino in Perryville and Ocean Downs Casino in Berlin have met the qualification requirements for sports wagering licenses.

The two casinos are among 17 entities that were designated in law to conduct sports wagering operations, pending a review of their qualifications to receive licenses. The applications from Hollywood and Ocean Downs will now be forwarded to the Sports Wagering Application Review Commission (SWARC), which is responsible for awarding the licenses.

Hollywood and Ocean Downs join Horseshoe Casino, Live! Casino & Hotel and MGM National Harbor in awaiting license awards. The MLGCC determined that Horseshoe, Live! and MGM were qualified on Oct. 6 and forwarded their applications to the SWARC. In August, the SWARC voted unanimously that the MLGCC’s qualification standards are sufficient for the SWARC to award licenses to the 17 designated entities. The SWARC postponed a meeting that was scheduled for Oct. 14, and has not announced a new meeting date.

“We’ve approved five facilities, and our work is ongoing,” said Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director John Martin. “We’ll continue sending applications to the SWARC so that it can make awards and sports wagering can launch by late fall. It’s what the public wants and expects, and we’re doing everything we can to deliver it.”

In affirming the qualifications of Hollywood and Ocean Downs, the MLGCC delegated to Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency (MLGCA) staff the authority to apply alternative licensing standards, as outlined in state law. The MLGCC may waive certain requirements for applicants that hold licenses from Maryland or other states where “the licensing standards are comprehensive and thorough and provide similar and adequate safeguards” to those required in Maryland (State Government Article § 9-1E-05).

MLGCA staff determined that Hollywood and Ocean Downs are qualified because they have gaming licenses in Maryland. Horseshoe, Live! and MGM were also found to be qualified because they hold Maryland gaming licenses. The MLGCA’s licensing investigations of these five sports wagering facilities are ongoing, and any licenses that are issued may be revoked. MLGCA staff are also conducting background investigations of each facility’s sports wagering operator partners, contractors and employees, all of which must be licensed by Maryland Lottery and Gaming.

After the SWARC formally awards the facility licenses, the MLGCA staff will ensure that the licensees have finalized their systems of internal controls and satisfied other operational requirements before issuing licenses. MLGCA staff are working with the applicants to expedite these tasks.

About Maryland Lottery and Gaming

Maryland Lottery and Gaming operates the Maryland Lottery and is responsible for regulatory oversight of the state’s casinos and sports wagering program. To keep Marylanders informed and promote integrity and transparency, Maryland Lottery and Gaming posts monthly financial reports on casino revenue at, along with annual fiscal year data. For more information on all Lottery products, promotions and news, visit Maryland Lottery and Gaming reminds players to play responsibly and within their budget; resources are available at or by calling 1-800-426-2537.