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Two Companies Apply to Independently Test Gaming Technology in Nevada

Nevada Regulators Propose Rules for the Private Testing of Online Poker


Nevada is relentless in its quest for innovation in the gaming world.

A bill signed into law this past summer mandated the Silver State to adopt regulations for private companies to test gaming technology, including a future online poker industry run from Nevada. Late last week, regulators released the first draft of proposed language to define and oversee these new businesses.

Despite rules not yet being in place, two companies have already applied to inspect and certify games.

Card Player has obtained information that Gaming Laboratories International and BMM Compliance have already submitted paperwork. Both companies offer their testing services globally.

To get the rules for this ancillary industry onto paper, one of the regulations that was fine-tuned during the state’s push to craft a framework for online poker will be amended. Nevada gaming regulation 14, which covers new gaming technology, has been through numerous alterations since its first version in 2003.

Private testing companies must be completely independent from the casino operator, according to the proposed regulation. They cannot have a financial interest in the gaming companies they do business with. Finally, testing companies cannot be involved in game development.

Such companies must display that they are “technically competent” to perform their role in the industry, according to the regulation.

The rules are also very strict on who can work for private testing labs. As Nevada moves into the final frontier of gaming, references to its mob beginnings still find their way onto new regulations.

It’s explicitly stated that employees of testing companies cannot have documented ties to organized crime, or have “notorious and unsavory” reputations.

The process is pretty simple to have rules finalized for independent testing labs.

Gaming Control Board staff begin by working with the stakeholders. After this investigation period is over, the staff write the rules and send them to the three-member Board for review. Workshops are held to publicly vet the changes, and then, if all goes well, the regulations are sent to the Gaming Commission — Nevada gaming’s top regulatory body — to finalize them.

The workshop for testing lab regulations will be held on Feb. 22 in Las Vegas.

The purpose of the law authorizing the ancillary industry is to expedite games to the market. State lawmakers were also concerned with maintaining a balance between regulators and business interests.

Dr. David Schwartz, Director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, told Card Player that there has been a “bottleneck” in the state’s understaffed testing labs. Regulators have said that the bulk of the scrutiny in licensing online poker sites would take place in the lab.

A total of 13 companies have already applied to participate in Nevada-based online poker.

Follow Brian Pempus on Twitter — @brianpempus