Wyoming On the Verge of Legalizing Online Casino Gaming

As the gaming market in Wyoming continues to expand, the state is now considering the legalization of online casino gambling. House Bill 120, sponsored by Representatives Jon Conrad and Robert Davis, aims to make significant progress towards legalizing online casino gambling in the state. This comes after the legalization of sports betting in Wyoming in 2021, under House Bill 133, signed by Governor Mark Gordon.

If approved, House Bill 120 will enable the state’s Gaming Commission to offer gambling licenses to up to five interactive gaming operators. The initial issuing fee for the license would be $100,000, with a renewal fee of $50,000. Vendor approvals would cost $10,000 upon issuing and $5,000 for renewal every five years. The proposed tax rate for the state would be 10%, with $300,000 of annual tax revenue proposed to fund various problem gambling programs.

What sets Wyoming apart from other states is the reciprocal agreements between the state and other jurisdictions, which will be granted to operators due to the state’s relatively small population of 548,000.

The push to legalize online casino gaming is not unique to Wyoming. Lawmakers in Illinois, Maryland, Hawaii, and New York have also introduced bills related to online casino gaming. In Illinois, House Bill 2239 aims to permit operators to launch iGaming operations in the state, with an initial license fee of $250,000 and a renewal fee of $100,000. Maryland’s Senate Bill 603, sponsored by Senator Ron Watson, would allow residents to decide the fate of iGaming in the state through a referendum.

In Hawaii, Senator Ronald D. Kouchi has proposed a bill that would establish a Gaming Control Commission and provide access to sports betting and online poker operations. Meanwhile, in New York, Governor Kathy Hochul faces budget constraints in establishing new operations.

The efforts across multiple states reflect the growing trend towards legalizing and regulating online casino gambling in the United States.