Published On: Thu, Jul 26th, 2012

Online Poker to be live by late 2012

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Gov. Brian Sandoval

Yesterday the Nevada Gaming Policy Committee, led by Gov. Brian Sandoval, met again to discuss online poker within the state, this time in a public setting.

Nevada could very well be live before 2013 according to Chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board Mark Lipparelli, one of 11 members on the panel, stating that the first real-money operator licenses, which are exclusively for casinos, will come through in 60-90 days.

Only three companies so far have been given approval to provide online poker software to Nevada casinos, which are Bally Technologies, International Game Technology and Shuffle Master.

Licensing and technology inspection are the only impediments to play commencing, as the Gaming Policy Committee voted to recommend that the state legislature remove some of the prohibitive language from 2011’s online poker bill.

Mark Lipparelli

The bill was passed before the Department of Justice clarified the 1961 Wire Act in December of last year. The opinion made intrastate web gaming free and clear of violating federal law. Soon, the Nevada legislation won’t require waiting for the federal approval.

Nevada will have its autonomy for intrastate web card playing. However, due to concerns about a small potential player pool, online operators within the state will want the lawmakers to make some deals.

State-to-state or state-to-nation compacts would infuse the soon-to-be Nevada sites with more players and greater revenue. The Committee said Tuesday that it will urge lawmakers and other state officials to “explore” the legal possibility of such partnerships.

After four meetings, the Gaming Policy Committee is now on a break, giving the Assembly and Senate, the Gaming Commission and the Gaming Control Board a handful of objectives to pursue and more clarity on some issues as Nevada inches closer to the first ever real-money site under the supervision and taxation of a state government.

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