Iowa and Indiana appeared to be in a race to see who could legalize sports betting first, and the Hawkeye State won the battle. Iowa legalized sports betting earlier this spring, but it is set to go live on Aug. 15 at noon CT. This is a monumental moment for the state of Iowa, and for the Midwest portion of the United States in general. There will obviously be some kinks and some issues arise in the first few weeks, but things should be running smoothly before the start of football season in September.
The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission was put in charge of the sports betting scene in the Hawkeye State, and they have been working feverishly to try and get things lined up. The casinos and racetracks in the state of Iowa were able to submit applications to offer sports betting, and the IRGC spent a few months going over the applications before issuing the licenses.
Eighteen of the 19 casinos in the state have been approved to offer sports betting, and almost all of these locations already have a sportsbook built on their premises. It is not known how many of these casinos will begin taking bets on Aug. 15, but all of them are expected to take bets before the start of the 2019 NFL season.
Mobile As Well
In-person betting is expected to be the most prominent form of betting at the beginning, but the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has also approved mobile or online betting. At least a dozen of the casinos who have been approved are planning on launching a mobile sportsbook at the same time they start offering in-person betting. The remaining casinos are working closely with other sportsbooks to get that form of betting up and running. New Jersey also has mobile betting apps and states have seen the huge success they have had.
Even though mobile and online sports betting is legalized as of Aug. 15, bettors will have to go to a casino to register for an account. Bettors will have to show proof of their age and then will have to set up a username and password. There will be several sportsbook apps that can be downloaded on a mobile device or a tablet to make sports betting more accessible to everyone in the Hawkeye State. The legal age to place a sports bet in Iowa is 21 years of age.
Iowa will become the 11th state in the country to launch sports betting, and several other states are set to follow in the coming weeks. Both collegiate and professional sporting events will be eligible under the new Iowa law, and daily fantasy sports are a part of this new bill as well. The state of Iowa is collecting a 6.75 percent tax on revenue, and the licensing fee is $45,000.
Both of these numbers are among the lowest in the country, which is a big reason why almost every casino has elected to participate. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission will closely monitor each casino for the first few months, and new legislation could be passed in 2020 to make any necessary changes.