Though sports betting in the state of Illinois was stopped almost immediately after it began due to the pandemic caused by COVID-19, some administrative legwork was completed Tuesday when the state’s Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR) certified the Phase 2 rules package from the Illinois Gaming Board without objection. The Phase 2 rules give priority to sports betting applications that offer the most revenue to the state and to considerations regarding the applicant’s character and commitment to ownership diversity as well as training and employing minorities.
The approval, coming as part of a JCAR meeting that lasted less than 10 minutes, was a formal first step in getting the rules codified and registered with the Secretary of State. The public commentary period for the Rules 2 package is ongoing, and the expectation is the package will be more specifically addressed at either the next meeting scheduled for April 21 or in May.
Also on Tuesday, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker extended the state’s stay-at-home executive order due to the pandemic through April 30, and the IGB followed suit. That means the state’s two sportsbooks accepting wagers — BetRivers Sportsbook at Rivers Casino in Des Plaines opened on March 9 and The Sportsbook at the Argosy Casino in Alton opened on March 12 — will have been closed for more than six weeks by April 30.
Fourth supplier applicant listed
The Illinois Gaming Board’s official website listed a fourth applicant for a supplier license, noting GeoComply submitted its application March 4. A geolocation service provider, GeoComply has already received approval as a vendor in New Jersey, Nevada, Delaware, Georgia, Mississippi, and West Virginia, according to its website.
Novomatic Americas Sales LLC and Sports Information Services Limited were granted temporary operating permits in February, while American Wagering Inc. (William Hill) submitted its application Feb. 21 and is partnered with the Grand Victoria in Elgin.