Nevada Bill Banning Sports Betting Kiosks Heads to Governor

ptskioskThe Nevada Resort Association has won their battle against William Hill sports betting kiosks in Nevada.  The Nevada Assembly voted 41-0 to ban sports betting kiosks in establishments holding a restricted gaming license.  This was after the bill passed 18-3 last week in the Nevada Senate.  It will go into effect on July 1, 2013 if Governor Sandoval signs the veto-proof bill as expected.

William Hill kiosks are typically found in taverns.  These include PT’s Pubs, Buffalo Wild Wings and a variety of smaller chains in the Las Vegas Valley.  The kiosks offer convenience for locals that may frequent taverns but otherwise would not make a wager in a resort’s sports book.  The bill does not affect mobile or internet sports betting through licensed Nevada casinos, nor does it affect kiosks found in nonrestricted properties in smaller cities.  These properties include the Goldstrike in Jean, as well as full service casinos in Pahrump and Primm.

Sports betting kiosks are not a big business in Nevada.  The total take from the estimated 80 machines in service was $600,000 in 2012, the first full year the kiosks were in use.  This means the average machine profited about $7,500 during 2012, or about $20 a day.  By comparison, the entire sports betting industry in Nevada profited $170 million in 2012.  These soon to be banned devices only accounted for .35% of all sports betting revenue in Nevada in 2012. 

Other Restricted License Rules

The bill also places other conditions on restricted gaming license holders.  These licensees are currently allowed only 15 machines per tavern.  When this law goes into effect a majority of these machines must be installed into a permanent bar.  Restricted licensees will also be required to serve food at least 12 hours a day and operate a minimum of 2,500 square feet of space. 

These changes are similar to the requirements placed into law in Clark County in an effort to combat the growth of Dotty’s and Jackpot Joanie’s business models that became popular during the recession.  These types of establishments cater to locals that prefer the small and friendly environment of a locals slot arcade over a large resort casino. 

Barring a veto by Governor Sandoval or a successful court challenge these previously approved business models will become illegal in Nevada with barely 30 days of notice to owners. 

 See also: Nevada Resort Association Fighting Existing Sports Betting Kiosks

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