Iowa Gaming Association Considers Bringing Legal Online Casino Gaming in the State

Iowa Gaming Association Considers Bringing Legal Online Casino Gaming in the State

The Iowa Gaming Association has indicated that it will support the legalization of online casino gaming. The association’s president Wes Ehrecke told Axios that several people in the gaming industry trade groups were for the legalization of internet gaming in Iowa.

By legalizing online casino gaming, Iowa will join five other states with legal iGaming, including Delaware, West Virginia, New Jersey, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. These states allow the gaming of online table games, poker, and slot machines.

The Iowa Gaming Association has 19 members from commercial casino property. The nonprofit group supports Iowa’s gaming industry and legislative efforts serving the industry’s best interest.

The State Could Benefit from iGaming Business

The 2022 legislative session is scheduled to start on January 10. The Iowa General Assembly will discuss issues in the Des Moines capital till the end of April.

Citing the legislation session, Ehrecke noted he was not sure whether lawmakers would discuss iGaming. But, he did believe interactive gaming had many positive features that would warrant lawmakers to consider it.

Following the COVID-19 pandemic last year, online legal gaming boosted gambling revenue. For example, in the largest iGaming market in the USA, New Jersey, gross gaming revenue for land-based casinos dropped by 44 percent. However, online winning almost doubled.

Last year, New Jersey received over $145.7 million in taxes from iGaming. This came from over $970 million gaming revenue collected by casinos operating online platforms in the state.

If Iowa can legalize online casino gaming, it will receive about a third of New Jersey’s tax upon the market’s maturity. This is because Iowa is a small state with about one-third the New Jersey’s population.

But, land-based casinos that offer online gaming make more on retail than they do online. Thus, one of the casinos in Iowa is against the legalization of online table games and slots.

Located in Altoona, Prairie Meadows is opposing the legalization of iGaming. Through its chair Angela Connolly, the Polk County-owned horse racetrack hopes to stop the legalization, citing it would reduce foot traffic at Prairie Meadows.

The State Is Revamping the Gaming Industry

Already, Iowa is scheduled to change in 2022. For starters, greyhound racing and pari-mutuel betting will come to an end.

For iGaming to prosper in the state, it needs first to be legalized. This can only happen if lawmakers are willing to expand gaming to feature online casinos as they did with the legalization of sports betting in 2019.

In 2019, Governor Kim Reynolds signed a bill allowing 19 casinos in Iowa to apply for sports betting licenses. This bill also allowed mobile sports betting.

The state taxes retail and online sports wagering at 6.75 percent. This is an incredible rate considering other states with legalized sports betting tax at a higher rate.

The sportsbooks are making good money, with their best month being September 2021, when they generated over 210 million. The other significant amount the bookies generated was in March, with $161.4 million.

Iowa is ready for iCasinos because most leading online sportsbooks in the country have state-of-the-art iGaming platforms. These platforms can be integrated into individual online sportsbooks.

For example, BetMGM, DraftKings, and BetRivers are some of the big brands operating online sportsbooks in Iowa. These brands are capable of integrating online casinos into their services as they already have the technical capacity.

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