Could Iowa be on the radar for online casino legislation this year?

Shutterstock / Abramova Kseniya

Iowa galloped across the finish line in August 2019 as one of the first states to launch legal online sports betting. Since then the Hawkeye State slow motion trotting on all new game expansion.

However, Iowa could emerge in 2022 as a dark horse to legalize online gambling, or at least advance the conversation about it. One factor that could lead to this is cross-border competition for gambling dollars from its neighbors. Illinois and Nebraska.

In the east, Illinois lawmakers got their own online casino bill up to a committee, but the bill didn’t make any further progress in 2021. This year could bring different news. , because the Illinois General Assembly is expected to resume discussions on the bill again. However, at the moment, committees are meeting remotely and House and Senate sessions are completely blocked due to coronavirus concerns. The sponsor of the bill in the Senate, Senator Cristina Castro, believes that the effort’s chances of success are better for 2023 than this year.

New Nebraska Retail Gambling Competition

To the west, Nebraska racetracks are poised to add retail casino games. On December 17, the Nebraska State Racing and Gaming Commission approved rules that will govern the operations of the casino.

Nebraska Public Media reports:

“Commission Chairman Dennis Lee has indicated that applications from existing racetracks would likely be considered first, but they cannot be filed until the rules are approved by the Attorney General and Governor.”

Stuck in the middle, Iowa has yet to approach the starting gate for online casino gaming in the United States. However, its legislative session only started on Monday, so there is still plenty of time.

Evan johnson, a tax law analyst with the Legislative Services Agency (LSA), confirmed it for Online Poker Report yesterday:

“At the moment, I am not aware of any legislation introduced on this subject. This is only the start of the session so that could change from day to day.

LSA is a non-partisan legislative body serving the Iowa Legislature.

Iowa appears to be preparing to discuss online casinos

iowa 3 million residents helped set a record for Hawkeye online sports betting gross gaming revenue (GGR) in November, generating $ 19.7 million, according to OPR sister site Legal sports report.

It is therefore no coincidence that operators who take bets on Iowa online sports betting, including DraftKings, PointsBet and Unibet, already secure market access for their hypothetical online casinos.

Even if operators are excited about their prospects in the state, they will compete with the shared attention of lawmakers, RPO sister post Play iowa reported.

The article from October 26 – which deals with Overdo it secure your own access to the online casino marketRuss mitchell cited Wes Ehrecke. He is the President and CEO of the Iowa Games Association, who defends Iowa retail casinos. These physical casinos can see their revenues decrease if the border raises the bar.

Ehrecke said lawmakers will likely campaign for his re-election over the summer and fall.

He said Play iowa:

“The probability of this progressing in 2022 is less than 50% right now. “

Ehrecke did not return RPOupdate request yesterday. However, even a small chance is better than most US states this year. For much of the country, online casinos aren’t even being discussed yet.

Officials with the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, Governor of Nebraska. Peter Ricketts and Attorney General of Nebraska Doug peterson did not come back either RPOrequests for comment from yesterday.