Earlier this year, the state of Illinois put a delay on its long-delayed bill to legalize online gambling within the state. Even though it is a fast-growing industry around the country, with Forbes reporting that it saw a 60% growth in the first months of the pandemic, it seems that the nation will have to wait a little longer before another state gets dealt into the game.
The Internet Gaming Act, which is joint-sponsored by State Rep. Robert Rita and State Sen. Cristina Castro, would have added online casinos to the forms of legal gambling that Illinois has to offer. This would have had it join the already legal online and retail sports betting market in the state.
Online gambling is big business. Just ask New Jersey, which had nearly $20 million in state tax revenue during October 2021 alone, setting a new record. It isn’t hardisn’tee why the online gaming industry is multiplying of late. The 2021 World Series of Poker recently took place in Las Vegas, which helps to keep the game in the public eye due to news reports and television coverage. The pandemic initially forced many in-person poker halls and casinos to shut down, forcing many to explore online options to enjoy their hobby. Casinos in Illinois have had to deal with multiple closures as officials grapple with the pandemic over the past two years.
However, this doesn’t medoesn’till be the end of online poker in the state. It has been delayed because the bill didn’t makdidn’tnto the veto session in October 2020. It will have to wait until 2022 to be considered for voting, so there is still plenty of hope for people and investors wanting to get in on the industry.
The bill would instruct the Illinois Gaming Board to quickly establish rules for online gambling and set a short deadline for them to make it happen. By introducing them to copy other states’ rustates’cluding nearby Pennsylvania, which is currently the most significant state to legalize online gambling, the bill aims to get gaming in Illinois up to and running as quickly as possible after it is approved. There are plenty of ways to invest in this and many other industries. When playing the stock market, no matter your budget, we’ve got resources on the Alienationht blog.
Illinois is seen as an excellent proving ground for online gambling. It already has in-person casinos available, and sports betting is a big industry in the state, so the infrastructure is already in place to help the online casinos succeed. With multiple big names in the gaming industry already vested interest, expect to see plenty of sites pop up when the ink is dried on the regulations.
However, even with these fast-tracked rules, it could be a few years before Illinois sees online gambling become legal and easily accessible. The Senate has recently authorized a study to look into the potential tax revenue of the new industry – a sign that some in the legislature might be having second thoughts about if it is worth introducing the bill at this time. However, it will be difficult to stop the bill’s momentum once it reaches the chamber floors, so crossing the initial hurdle will be the most crucial step.