Iowa Gambling Authority to Vote on the New Rules
Good news for residents of Iowa, as legal sports betting could arrive in Hawkeye State in a couple of week from now. Of course, this will happen provided the state’s gambling authority greenlights the proposed rules at a meeting scheduled to take place this week.
Iowa made wagering on sports legal back in May, becoming the 11th state to have made such a move following the last year’s decision of the U.S. Supreme Court to lift the federal ban on this activity. Now, only the approval of the rules is needed to launch sports betting. If all goes according to plans, sports betting in Iowa will kick-off on August 15, with the state outpacing its neighbours in Illinois.
Getting Ready for the Launch
Once sports betting is launched, players will be able to place their wager at Iowa’s casinos and online, but most importantly, they’ll be able to place their wager from the very start of the new NFL season.
Governor Kim Reynolds inked the bill into law in May, allowing betting on professional and collegiate sports in Iowa, but for wagering on sports to be launched, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission needs to approve the rules that will govern the state’s industry.
It should be noted that some modifications and corrections were made to the draft rules at a public hearing which took place on July 11. According to Administrator for the Racing and Gaming Commission, Brian Ohorilko, the rules are ready to be considered by the state’s gambling authority.
Under the provisions of the new sports betting piece of legislation, land-based casino in Iowa will be able to offer in-person and digital wagering services to its customers. Bettors will be allowed to bet on the majority of professional and collegiate sports, but not on those involving college teams from Iowa. In addition to sports betting, players will also be able to enjoy daily fantasy sports.
Almost All Casinos Applied for a License
18 out of 19 land-based casinos in Iowa have applied for a sports betting license. The only venue not to do so was Casino Queen Marquette, but Ohorilko pointed out the Commission was sure it would apply in the coming period.
All eyes are on the upcoming meeting, because if the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission says yes to the new rules, legal sports betting in the state will start on August 15, and gambling venues will be able to form partnerships with third-party operators. These operators will also require a license to do business in Iowa.
In the meantime, casinos are already in talks with potential partners, while some have already inked new partnerships agreements.
The renowned British bookmaker William Hill struck several partnerships deals with Iowa casinos, which will significantly expand the company’s presence in the U.S. The list of these deals includes the one with Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino to operate a sportsbook, signed earlier this year. The most recent agreements William Hill struck in Iowa are those to run the sports betting operations at Isle Casino Waterloo and Isle Casino Bettendorf.