The state of Pennsylvania is one step closer to launching online casino gaming.
Since a gaming package was passed into law last year in the state of Pennsylvania, gamblers have been patiently waiting to see online casino and poker gaming come to life. The process has been on going and it seems that operators are one step closer to offering services online. This week, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board revealed even more information regarding the iGaming process.
Doug Harbach is the Director of Communications for the Board who discussed how the online casino industry is progressing in a recent interview. Harbach stated that the application process is now open for the $10 million licenses up for grabs. At this price point, existing casinos in the state can offer poker, slots and table games. Applications are titled petitions and will require each applicant to provide a great deal of information to gain approval.
In the state, there are twelve casinos currently in operation. Each of these operators can file a petition for online casino gaming. The petitions will be taken until July 15th. Once this deadline is reached, operators can then apply for a single license in each category. Online poker, slots and table games will cost $4 million each.
So, what type of information is required to file a petition? According to Online Poker Report, there are several key points that operators need to include. A list of interactive games to be offered with gaming categories for each game identified. The operator must also provide a plan of employment for the individuals they plan on hiring for online slot machine operation. Employees must be from a diverse group of people, including residents of the region.
The operator must also provide information on how they will be benefiting the commonwealth economically. A complete rundown needs to be provided focused on how the operator will be running online gaming operation centers. Standards for consumer protections and security need to be provided as well.
When Will Online Gaming Launch
As the process moves forward, it will most likely be some time before we see online casino games launch in Pennsylvania. After the June deadline, there will be another 30 days provided for the single applications for online gaming. With these time lines, the application process will not be over until mid August.
Once the licensing process is complete, it is unclear what the next steps will be. We could assume that operators will be able to offer online gaming, launching online poker rooms and casinos. So, this could mean that iGaming would begin in the fall.
However, there are still things to consider that could see the option delayed further. The skin issue is still on the table and will need to be determined before online gaming sites can launch. Most operators want to see the skins not limited, having the option to operate several sites under one license. However, there are those who are not in favor. Parx wants to see one site offered per casino while 888, a top online gaming operator, wants to see multiple skins allowed.
It was revealed in early April that multiple skins might be allowed as long as the sites include branding of the licensee.
Now its just a guessing game as we wait and see how the licensing process plays out. Hopefully, there will be much interest and all available licenses will be snatched up. If so, we may see the industry launch earlier than expected. We will stay up to date on the process and report any changes and updates as they are made available.