Illinois officially began allowing sports bets to be placed on March 9th, 2020. Initially, sports bettors needed to register in-person to join an online sportsbook. Online registration started being allowed fairly recently. This week, Governor Pritzker offered another important update on IL’s sports betting regulations.
Fortunately, this update will benefit sports bettors in the state. Today, we’re going to talk about what Governor Pritzker has decided. We’ll also talk about how Illinois’ gambling industry is set to evolve.
Let’s get into it!
Sports Betting Revenue Continues to Surge Throughout the US
As many are now aware, the US Supreme Court decided to remove PASPA back in May of 2018. This completely changed the country’s gambling industry. With PASPA gone, every state could set its own laws towards sports betting.
It didn’t take long for state leaders to capitalize on the law change. Sports betting bills began appearing around the country. States with regulated sports betting industries started seeing their revenue earnings increase rapidly.
Today, more than two years later, over 20 states now have legal sports betting industries set in place. The US has become the world’s biggest sports gambling market. Many of Europe’s top sports betting companies are now making the move into the US to take advantage of this new market.
New Jersey is proving to be the most lucrative sports betting destination in the United States. For months, revenue from the industry has been increasing rapidly. In September, the state set another all-time US record for sports betting handle at $748 million.
No one expects things to slow down anytime soon. We’re now several weeks into the 2020 NFL season and bets continue to increase. Several more states now have the legalization of sports betting appearing on November’s voting ballots.
Sports betting fans in Illinois got another good piece of news this week.
IL’s Sports Betting Regulations Are Remaining in Place, for Now
Illinois’ lawmakers pushed hard to legalize sports betting almost immediately after PASPA was struck down. It wasn’t until this March that the first legal sportsbook began operating here, though. Initially, the state required all sports bettors to register in-person at a sportsbook before being able to place any wagers online.
This approach was taken by several other states. It’s proven to significantly reduce revenue earned from the sports betting industry. The fact is most people are unwilling to register to an online sportsbook at a physical location when there are already so many unregulated online sportsbooks available to join online.
It seems that officials in Illinois realized this. Recently, the state decided to suspend its in-person registration rule. Sports bettors were able to register to state-regulated online sportsbooks online. The plan was for this regulation to end this past weekend.
Interestingly, IL’s sports betting regulations have been extended. Governor Pritzker has decided to keep this rule set in place until at least November 14th. The Governor will then need to decide whether or not to scrap the rule entirely.
The change in rules has already resulted in a massive surge in new sports betting sign-ups. Revenue from this industry is increasing and the state is earning some much-needed money via taxes. Eventually, land-based sportsbooks will begin operating in the state’s major sports arenas, too.
Illinois is working hard to expand its gambling industry. Several more casinos are still scheduled to open here over the next few years.
What’s Happening With the Casino Plans in Chicago?
Last year, Governor Pritzker signed off on a new capital plan that allows for new casinos to begin opening around the state. Several cities have already received permission to host one of these new gambling venues. To the surprise of many, the Governor also agreed to allow a major casino-resort to open in Chicago.
The process of opening this Chicago has been extraordinarily difficult. The state set extremely high tax rates for whoever operates this venue. As a result, no companies were pushing to obtain a casino license here.
This tax rate has since been lowered. Even now, very few companies are seeing the potential for major revenue gains here. Mayor Lori Lightfoot is working hard to make this future casino more appealing, though.
Not long ago, Lightfoot invited several major gaming companies to offer their insight on this venue. The Mayor wanted to learn more about how the casino would be run. This process would also help the state better decide which company to grant a license to. We’ll hear more about the state’s plans for the casino in Chicago in the next few months.
Hopefully, IL’s sports betting regulations remain how they currently are. The state is finally seeing a major surge in legal, taxed sports betting. We’ll be sure to offer more updates on this industry here over the next few months.
Are you happy to see Illinois suspend its in-person sportsbook registration process? When do you expect the casino in Illinois to open? Let us know in the comments section below!