Iowa Subcommittee

  • Legal sports betting in Iowa has been active since 2019.
  • Under House Study Bill 200, esports and other events relating to sports would be made legal for gambling.
  • The proposal passed in the hearing and will now move to the floor for consideration to become law.

DES MOINES, IowaIowa’s House State Government Committee held a subcommittee meeting on Wednesday where they heard about a bill that would legalize esports betting and other events related to sports and moved it forward in the House.

The Hawkeye State is already home to legal sports betting for both mobile and retail gambling on the games. However, House Study Bill 200 is looking to expand upon the law and add more offerings to the sports wagering menu for Iowan sports bettors.

What Is House Study Bill 200?

IA HSB 200 is simple enough in its request to broaden the legal sports betting laws of Iowa. The state currently does not allow for esports wagers or events related to a sport that are not actually about the outcome of a matchup.

The proposal wishes to include these two items within the law. Of course, they detail stipulations that will be more attractive to lawmakers; no gambling on anything pertaining to a sport or a particular esports event or player if they are under 18.

A great example of this would be the prop bet. If there is an athlete in the NBA Draft, the Draft itself can have wagers placed on it but should the athlete be 17 then they’re ineligible for gamblers to bet on them.

This subject is prevalent in esports because so many top players are not yet 18.

The legal age for gamblers in Iowa would remain the same, 21 or older, as would the rest of the laws pertaining to sports betting in the Hawkeye State should this bill come to pass.

The Hearing For IA HSB 200

The meeting of the subcommittee for Iowa’s House State Government Committee heard both from those opposed to IA HSB 200 and those that were in favor of the legislation moving forward.

Opposition circled around the fact that additional ways to gamble on sports could lead to even more gambling addiction in Iowa. But money obtained through GGR from these add-ons would go toward funding gaming addiction programs for the Hawkeye State that are already available.

Representatives from various operators in the state were in favor of the legislation as they agreed that it should be seen as an oversight within the original law from 2019 for legal Iowa sports betting.

There was a request for more information to be gathered before making a decision but in the end that was deemed unnecessary.

House Study Bill 200 was given the green light to move forward in the legislative process by Representative Bobby Kaufmann before adjourning.

“I think we should allow Iowans to make their own decisions on what kind of entertainment that they’re involving themselves in and if they want to participate in any sports gambling I think that’s their right to do so,” said Kaufmann. “I think here in the state we make it clear that we let Iowans make those decisions on their own.”

There is no date set for when the next hearing on IA HSB 200 will take place. The legislative session in Iowa adjourns for the year on April 20.

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