Poker Coverage: Poker Legislation Poker Tournaments Daily Fantasy Sports Poker Stories Podcast U.S. Poker Markets

Iowa Lottery Considering Online Gaming

CEO Of Lottery Says Online Games Are The Future

Print-icon
 

Iowa has in the past flirted with the idea of online poker, and now the state lottery is considering bringing real-money games to the Internet, according to a report from wnax.com.

The state’s lottery CEO testified before the Iowa House Government Oversight Committee that bringing games to the Internet is needed to remain competitive. CEO Terry Rich said that an attorney general’s opinion indicates the Iowa Lottery has the authority to conduct online gaming.

Around a dozen states have some form of online lottery services, though none offer peer-to-peer online poker right now like what’s running in Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey. Nevada and New Jersey have online poker that’s not affiliated with a lotto, unlike Delaware.

In the past, Illinois was considering letting its lotto run online poker.

According to a 2011 report released by Iowa gaming regulators, Iowans had given offshore online poker companies $13 million to $60 million in revenue annually. The previously proposed 22-percent rate could yield $3 million to $13 million for the state.

An unofficial study from regulators concluded that half of brick-and-mortar gamblers in Iowa “played Internet poker a few times a week or more.” The study estimated that in 2009 the number of online poker players in the state was about 85,000. Iowa has a population of just over 3 million.

In March, the Iowa State student newspaper penned a great op-ed in support of online gaming regulation in the state, saying “it’s time to move forward with our progressive technology.”

In 2012, the Iowa Senate signed off on an online poker bill, but the measure failed in the House.