Baby Steps Towards Online Casinos?
Added: Sept. 8, 2014
Or, is this just the smart workings of a savvy government official? You decide for yourself.
What’s going on here? Without repeating the whole drama (yet again), you most likely already are well aware that the push for legalized online casino action in the United States has been a wild roller coaster ride over the last few years. You know that there are already three states, Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware that have already legalized online casinos and are already allowing their residents to enjoy the benefits of online gambling action.
Yet, it’s likely that no one would have predicted some wild action from none other than the state of West Virginia. Yes, you read that correctly, West Virginia. Not really the hot bed of gambling activity, in fact, not really on the online gambling radar at all. All that aside, let’s take a look at a possible work around that West Virginia officials are considering.
First up, what’s the point? What is the sudden motivation for change in West Virgina? In a word, cash, or to be blunt, a lack of cash. You see, officials in West Virginia have been watching their numbers drift lower and lower. In this case, its the numbers reported from the state’s racetrack casinos. According to their own figures, they have seen the state Lottery revenue drop 4 percent since the same time last year. Also, the state’s racetrack casinos which sport a wide selection of video lottery options has seen a decline of 5 percent.
According to the State Lottery Director, John Musgrave, the money is being sucked up by out of state competition from other casinos. So the Director came up with a brilliant solution. Recognizing that anyone and everyone is online nowadays, he is proposing a sort of online gaming workaround. It would work like this, the West Virginia Lottery would set a form of online gaming that would allow residents to play Lottery Games online.
Even better, Musgrave recognizes that everybody is sporting a SmartPhone. Thus, he is proposing that his version of online gaming be available through a Smartphone app.
Interestingly, without reviewing the nuances of West Virgina law, suffice it to say that Musgrave’s solution is in fact a work around. According to him, blanket authorization of online gaming would require legislative action. On the other hand, Musgrave confidently states the State Lottery can implement his form of online gaming without legislative approval.
Conclusion: West Virginia may have uncovered a loophole that could be used by many other states to bring in online gambling. Of course, once it’s available, expansion of online gambling to online casinos is a relatively straightforward path.