Nevada to Modify Regulations to Make Interstate Gambling Compacts Possible

Gambling experts have been predicting that New Jersey and Nevada will sign interstate online poker compacts to merge player pools and create liquidity next year. A few days back, online gambling regulators in Nevada were discussing various changes that need to be implemented into the regulatory structure in order to make the signing of interstate online poker compacts possible.

The Silver State drew up a regulatory framework for online poker in Dec 2011. These regulations will have to be first amended before the state can enter into interstate online poker pacts with other US states.

In a statement made to Vegas Incorporated on Tuesday, Governor Sandoval said: “I can’t enter into any compacts or agreements with other states until the Gaming Control Board and Gaming Commission adopt regulations to allow me to do so. We have had preliminary conversations with other states, but there is nothing I can do until the regulations are adopted, which I understand may happen next month.”

Early in 2013, Sandoval signed into law a bill that permits interstate online poker compacts. In 2011, Nevada legalized online poker, and a few months back, the Silver State became the first in the country to launch an online poker site in the form of Ultimate Poker, a brand owned by Station Casinos. Caesars Entertainment is expected to launch another online poker site in Nevada soon.

Interactive Gaming Technology (IGT) and Bally have made it quite clear to gambling regulators in New Jersey and Nevada that they are interested in launching progressive game networks across states. A legal representative for Bally and IGT has also submitted a petition to the Nevada Gambling Control Board regarding this. Sandoval announced that these proposals will be heard sometime next month.

In an interview with Card Player, Mark Lipparelli, former chairman for the Nevada Gambling Control Board, said that “far-reaching” online poker compacts will not be advisable for the state. He said: “I would say that it’s likely that state-to-state, multiple-market initiatives will begin in 2014. It’s a little more challenging to peg which states. I’m a believer that we’re going to see states begin to compact with each other or even allow cross-border access to markets, and maybe it wouldn’t even require a compact of any kind. That’s a likely thing to occur.”

When Card Player asked William Horne, a lawmaker in Nevada, about a possible interstate gambling deal between New Jersey and Nevada, he replied: “There’s a desire in both jurisdictions to get something done.” Horne is also of the opinion that Nevada’s regulations can easily be amended to make such interstate pacts possible. He said: “I wouldn’t anticipate it being too difficult because both states have a strong track record with gaming regulation.”

It is just a matter of time therefore before gambling companies in Nevada can gain access to other regulated markets across the US. Lawmakers only have to modify the regulations, and this is bound to happen soon. Once this happens, the Silver State’s online poker industry will get a considerable boost.

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