Illinois will also look at legalization of daily fantasy sports again

Illinois Lawmakers Will Hold Online Casino, Poker, Sports Betting Hearings

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Illinois is going to take a serious at look at a major gaming expansion during a pair of scheduled hearings in the coming months, according to a key lawmaker in the House of Representatives.

Here we go in Illinois

State Rep. Bob Rita, who heads the House subcommittees on Gaming, and Sales and Other Taxes — announced that hearings would be held on:

  • Wednesday, Aug. 22, at the Bilandic Building in Chicago
  • Wednesday, Oct. 3, at the Capitol in Springfield

Lawmakers would not vote on any proposal until after the November elections.

More about the hearings

In the hearings, Rita expects to tackle online poker, online casino, sports betting and daily fantasy sports.

“As I have said from the beginning in working on this issue, gaming expansion presents many tremendous opportunities to create revenue, jobs and economic growth in Illinois,” Rita said in a press release.

“The gaming landscape has changed significantly since I took on this issue five years ago, and I want to use these hearings to understand how those changes present new opportunities for us to put the right package together as we look to meet budget needs and provide a spark for our economy.”

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The backstory of online gambling and Illinois

DFS has been on the legislature’s radar since 2015, but it has failed to formally legalize the activity.

The Senate also passed a bill that would have created legal online casinos in Illinois, as well as poker in 2017, but the House did not vote on the legislation.

- Dustin Gouker has been a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer -- including stops at The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner. He has played poker recreationally for his entire adult life and has written about poker since 2008.
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