• Iowa sportsbooks have already been approved at several casinos throughout the state.
  • Mobile sports wagering apps in Iowa will be geo-fenced so users can only place wagers while still physically located in the state.

ALTOONA, Iowa – Football fans know it’s never too early to start looking forward to the 2019 NFL season.

The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC) has this date in mind as well. After a public hearing concerning Iowa sports betting was conducted at Prairie Meadows on Thursday, the Commission appears to be right on track to finalize rules regarding the new gaming activity.

“It’s very important to give the public the confidence of the integrity of the sports wagering will be no different than the current gaming entertainment options,” said Wes Ehrecke of the Iowa Gaming Association.

The rules presented in the public hearing closely mirror the rules set in IA SF 617, the sports betting bill that was signed into law by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds in May.

Measures include a $45,000 initial license fee and a $10,000 annual fee to be paid to the state by sports betting operators. Operators will also have to pay a 6.75% tax on sports betting revenue generated each month.

Any one of the 19 casinos in Iowa can apply for a license, and if they are approved, they can offer two skins for online sports wagering companies to partner with them.

“When they’re using their apps, those apps can work anywhere, but the wagering element will not work unless the geo-location provider can identify that the person is located within the state of Iowa,” said Brian Ohorilko, Racing and Gaming Administrator for Iowa.

In order to use these apps, they will require you to register in-person at the partnered casino until January 1, 2021.

One rule that some Iowa sports fans may have wanted to contend is the one concerning college sports. Bettors will not be able to place prop bets on Iowa Hawkeyes, the Iowa State Cyclones, or on any other in-state collegiate player.

This measure was put in part to protect the integrity of the matches. But, prop bets on other out-of-state collegiate players are still an option.

The hearing went highly uncontested which is good news for those looking to place bets before the start of the 2019 NFL season. The IRGC meets again on July 30 and August 22. It is possible that they could finalize regulations at either one of those meetings.

In the meantime, the IRGC has already approved sportsbook construction at several Iowa casinos including the Grand Falls Casino and Golf Resort in Larchwood, IA. Grand Falls Casino sits right on the state border and is only a 20-minute drive from Sioux Falls, SD.

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