Online gambling reached a stalemate a few years ago as only Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada had legalized the option. Delaware and New Jersey have offered online casino and poker games since 2013 and Nevada decided to stick with only online poker. It was not until 2017 that Pennsylvania passed online poker and casino gaming legislation, but the state has yet to get started. It seems now that one more state may be in the mix soon. West Virginia has passed an online gaming bill in the Senate, with only two steps remaining before the bill becomes law.
HB 2934 was originally passed in the House back in February and the bill then moved on to the state Senate. The West Virginia Lottery Interactive Wagering Act was approved by the Senate with a vote of 26 to 7, with the bill now heading back to the House for approval.
Minor changes were made to the bill so it must now be reviewed and passed by the House again before it can go on to Governor Jim Justice’s desk. The bill should make it through the House again and it may be just a short amount of time before we see West Virginia become the next state to legalize online gambling in the US.
The bill would allow the five licensed casinos in the state to apply for online gaming licensing. A license for a five year time frame would have a cost of $250,000. Renewing the license would cost $100,000. Online gaming operations in the state would be taxed at 15%.
West Virginia is one of a few states that recently passed sports betting legislation and have been offering services for a few months now. With the passage of online gambling, the state would be able to add even more revenues to their coffers via the new source of income.