Pennsylvania is a state constantly on the pursuit of advancement when it comes to its gambling industry and this is clearly visible by the constant innovations which are considered and introduced. Also known as the Keystone State, Pennsylvania has dedicated the year of 2018 for major changes in its gambling field and exploration of new offerings. One of the ways in which the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, the authority which oversees the gambling field, is able to make progress happen is through the iGaming implementation.
Online gambling within the borders of the state received a green light for development towards the end of 2017 and ever since then, the authorities have been working towards implementing the most efficient framework which aims to eliminate any discontent in both players and gaming operators. The last days of October 2017 saw the official legalization of online gambling in an attempt to diversify its gambling offerings. With Governor Tom Wolf’s signature on the papers, the state of Pennsylvania became the fourth state to offer legal online gambling to its residents and guests. The rest of the states which allow gambling in the Internet space are Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware.
Taking Care of the Financial Deficit
This is part of the plan for action which the state has come up with in order to involve more players of the younger demographics and introduce them to the world of gaming. There is also the added factor of introducing more funds which will help with the reduction of the state’s financial deficit and this was the original idea of the authorities. The $2.2 billion gap in the state budget could be reduced significantly with the expected revenue which online gambling could amass, namely some $200 million which will be more than welcome for the future development of the industry.
The authorities have been on the pursuit of ways in which they can improve the current state of the state lottery and the financial state in general. Even though it could be recalled that the Governor has not always been a fervent supporter of the idea of gambling expansion and online operation, his support and debating the proposal have made this change possible. He brought up the topic during multiple discussions and one of the strongest arguments in support of the change was that when spread across many channels is going to provide better results than a tax increase when it comes to the problematic financial deficit.
Details Around the Games on Offer
Ever since June 2017, the authorities have been working on the introduction of the new framework which will regulate the online gambling field and protect both the operators working in it and the players willing to participate in it. This is going to give more security to all parties involved in the gaming activities. What should be taken into account, however, is the complete differentiation of iLottery from traditional online gambling which involves games offerings available at a brick-and-mortar casino venue.
There are constant conversations regarding potential gambling cannibalization since there is a significant number of gambling venues in the state and due to this, the future iLottery in Pennsylvania has made it clear that it will not have on offer gambling offerings to the likings of poker, roulette, slot machines, and blackjack. What has to be clear in this case is that no slot machines games will be available within the range of the new iLoterry, since this is s topic of constant discussion. There are many gaming offerings which have the appearance of slot machines but are in fact, not.
Instead, there will be online lottery games similar to online slots or Video Lottery Terminal games which are not actual slot machines. The gaming regulator of the state of Pennsylvania stated that the new online gambling field will provide players with the chance to give their luck a try in online scratch-off games, as well as a wide variety of draw games, fast play, and monitor games. Among the draw games which will be available are Powerball, Mega Millions, Pennsylvania Lottery Cash 4 Life, Cash 5!, Match 6 Lotto, Treasure Hunt, as well as Millionaire Raffle. Powerball and Mega Millions are offered in a total of 44 states and are some of the most well-known draw games
The electronic scratch-off games will include more than 50 offerings available ranging from $3 Bingo to $30 $3,000,000 Extreme Green ones. The Fast Play games which are offered by the state lottery are similar to the Scratch-Off ones, and they are some of the preferred gambling activities. Some of the more popular ones might be included in the offerings of the iLottery, to the likings of Gold Fish, Keystone Cash, Fast Cash Bingo, Triple Win, and Lucky You. As for the monitor games which could be available, Keno and Virtual Sports Monitor Games are currently available at some of the brick-and-mortar locations of Pennsylvania’s Lottery and they could be introduced in online form.
Regulation of the Field
According to recently announced decision of the gambling authority, the number of online gambling brands, or “skins” as they are also referred to could be unlimited. The only condition is that it should be visually clear on their website which casino they’re dealing with. The gambling regulator is willing to take into consideration the online gambling experience of neighboring state of New Jersey and implement some of its practices in its future iGaming field. Since Atlantic City is known as the East Coast gambling hub and New Jersey is one of the most advanced gambling locations, Pennsylvania’s attempt to adopt some of its regulations is not a surprise to anyone.
This strive to introduce some of the already functioning regulations which give good results is clearly visible by the wording of the new temporary regulations. Some of the sections are taken directly from the online gambling regulations which are overseeing the field in New Jersey. What is different, however, is the fact that businesses will have the permission to have their equipment anywhere in the US, as long as they are approved by the PGCB, which is entirely different from the rules in Nevada and New Jersey. There is also the chance for future partnership with operators from another state, New Jersey being one of the potential ones.
The future of Pennsylvania’s iLottery appears to be brighter than ever and this May is going to witness its official start of operation. The month of March saw the 46th anniversary of Pennsylvania’s Lottery and this is a nice time for the state to bring into existence its online-based gambling offerings. Utilizing the knowledge of already established gambling hubs, such as neighboring New Jersey, the state is willing to fill in its unbalanced budget.