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Iowa Welcomes Legal Sports Betting


Sportsbook legalisation is taking place in the United States at rapid speed, and Iowa is the latest to join the legal sports betting market. This follows as the sports betting bill was signed on Monday by Gov, Kim Reynolds. Bill SF617 allows land-based casinos, mobile betting and online sports betting. The regulatory body is the Iowa Racing and Gambling Commission who will oversee all sports betting activities, online, mobile and land-based.

Mobile, Online and Land-Based Sports Betting in Iowa

The bill also allows the state’s 19 casinos to now apply for licenses to offer sports betting. The legalisation of sports betting provides casinos to complete the application form and pay a fee of $45,000, while the annual renewal fee is set at $10,000. Currently, Iowa plans to have all sportsbooks open and running in time for the kick-off of the NFL season in 2019. It is excellent news that a sports fan will be able to place bets online or via their mobile devices. Although, it is essential for sports bettors to not that pacing such bets would require them to register an account in person first. Once the account is opened and verified, mobile and online betting is available. This requirement to register in person will remain in place until the end of 2020.

Iowa to Attract Neighbouring State Business

Iowa will draw a lot of sportsbook betting business from its neighbouring states such as Nebraska and Minnesota; still, it would not be the largest market in the nation. At the moment Nebraskans are known for travelling to enjoy gambling entertainment in Iowa. It is estimated that around $300 million is spent annually at the casinos in Iowa. This figure will hugely increase with the addition of legal sports betting and is expected to generate well over $4 billion once it is fully matured.

The rest of the country already enjoyed a rise of 3% in revenue at commercial casinos for the period 2017 to 2018. For the same time-period, Iowa experienced a tenth of the growth at 0.3%. The sports betting revenue tax is set at 6.75%, which is moderate compared to the tax rate of 36% in Pennsylvania. Every other state that has legalised sportsbook betting also incorporated an integrity fee, which is for the official league data use, Iowa did not add this for live betting.

The topic of lifting the federal ban on sportsbook betting was discussed in Iowa since 2018. The state has a large number of sports supporters and welcomes the legalisation of sports betting. It will start on the 4th of July although many believe the new system will only become fully functional at the end of July or early August. The sports betting rules still need to be established by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, which will take some time. For now, every sports fan hopes that all will be operational before the NFL 2019 season starts.