What are the main differences between California in terms of regulations with other states?
The state of California has a population of almost 40 million people. That makes it the most populous state in the country and the third-largest by land area. Needless to say, it is a pretty big place with a lot of people. So, when it comes to gambling and gaming regulations, how does California compare to other states?
In this blog post, we will take a look at how California’s iGaming laws stack up against those in other states across the US, with Illinois being a particular focus. We will see how each state approaches online gambling and what differences there are between them, while also looking at the future of iGaming and sports betting in the Golden State and whether there is a possibility of this happening.
What is the current state of play in California?
The state of California has a long and complicated relationship with gambling and gaming. It is home to some of the most well-known casinos in the world, but it also has a history of restricting gambling activities.
Currently, the only form of online gambling entertainment that is legal in California is online poker. There have been various attempts to pass laws that would allow for other forms of online gambling, such as online casino games and sports betting, but so far these have all been unsuccessful.
However, there have been movements in the past year or so that could lead to a change in the law and allow for other forms of online gambling to be legalized. In November 2019, a bill was introduced in the California State Senate that would have legalized online casino games, sports betting, and poker. However, this bill did not make it through the legislative process and failed to become law.
We have seen some movement recently, too, in regard to Propositions 26 and 27, which will be voted on in the near future. If these propositions are approved by voters, they could pave the way for the legalization of online gambling in California, with sports betting and iGaming their main focus.
What about other states?
When we look at other states across the US, we can see that California is far from alone in its restrictive approach to online gambling. In fact, there are only a handful of states that have legalized any form of online gambling.
One state that has taken a more liberal approach to online gambling is Illinois. The state has legalized online casino games, sports betting, and poker, and there are a number of operators offering these services. Online gambling was actually legalized back in 2019, but it took a while for the first operators to launch their services.
In fact, thanks to different legislation among states, the recent launch of BetMGM sportsbook in Illinois brought financial benefit to the state as we have seen millions of dollars be pumped into the local, state, and national economies as a result of the regulations that have been brought into the region.
However, Illinois is not the only place that has decided to implement regulations in the past, with the likes of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Connecticut, Michigan, and West Virginia having each introduced iGaming regulations.
The state of Pennsylvania is another that has legalized online gambling, with casino games, sports betting, and poker all being available. Online gambling was first legalized back in 2017, and the first operators launched their services in 2019.
New Jersey is another state with a long history of gambling, and it was one of the first to legalize online gambling back in 2013. Casino games, sports betting, and poker are all available in the state, and there are a number of operators offering their services.
Could California follow Illinois’ lead?
Given the success that Illinois has managed to have over the last few years since regulating iGaming activities and sports betting, there may be some that may be wondering whether California could look to the state as a way of being able to introduce the activity successfully and in a way that can be beneficial in the grand scheme of things.
While California has so far been unwilling to legalize any form of online gambling, the recent movements in the state suggest that this could be about to change. If Propositions 26 and 27 are approved by voters, it is likely that we will see a change in the law that would allow for other forms of online gambling to be legalized. Indeed, with the Golden State boasting a nation-leading population and one that is already pushing 40 million habitants, this could be extremely advantageous for the state in the future.
This would be a huge step forward for the state, and it would also provide a boost to the local economy. Online gambling is a growing industry, and it is estimated that the global market will be worth $59.79 billion by 2025. If California were to legalize online gambling, it would be in a prime position to tap into this market and generate a significant amount of revenue for the state.
It is also worth noting that a number of tribal casinos have already expressed an interest in offering online gambling services if it were to be legalized. This would provide even more choice for Californians, and it would also bring in additional revenue for the state.
So, while California has been slow to act on online gambling, it seems that this could be about to change.
Naturally, whether the two propositions highlighted are able to be passed and be brought into regulation is something that remains to be seen, but there is evidence that the introduction of iGaming and sports betting could be beneficial for the state. Illinois has already shown clear evidence of this, as the state has been able to generate millions of dollars that have been used to improve a number of things.
Of course, only time will tell regarding how things turn out, but perhaps California may not be so different to many other states in the future when it comes down to regulations.