The Virginia Lottery Board has finally given the green light to the development of a bustling casino industry within its state lines.
Nearly half a year after its temporary casino regulations came into effect in Virginia, the Board approved a permanent set of rules that should pave the road for future casinos. At the moment, the proposed regulations await Governor Ralph Northam’s consent. If they get it, there will be a 60-day public comment period, followed by the Lottery Board’s final approval.
“The Lottery’s Gaming Compliance Department and Office of General Counsel have been diligently working to set up the regulatory and licensing framework to ensure casino gaming in Virginia is secure and transparent. […] In this role, we see the Lottery as the public’s watchdog, confirming that the law and regulations are followed, and the integrity of casino gambling is protected,” said Kevin Hall, executive director of the Virginia Lottery.
Earlier in April, Virginia allowed casinos to apply for licenses. As the applications arrived, the Lottery Board started an investigation of each casino, including a review of their financial and criminal status, to confirm the legitimacy of each applicant. Four prospective casinos have already passed the public vote in Virginia, and they’re located in Bristol, Danville, Norfolk, and Portsmouth. These casinos have already received the Board’s approval; other applicants will wait up to a year for the Board to complete its review.
Sports betting has already proven lucrative for the state of Virginia, bringing in almost $235 million this June alone. In fact, the state is considered the fastest-growing sports-betting market in the United States and was the fastest market to reach $1 billion in sports betting revenue. This number becomes even more impressive when we take into account that the people of Virginia could only legally bet on sports since January this year.
With a tax rate of 15% and the incredible success of sports betting after it has become legal, Virginia officials have no doubt that land-based casinos will prove even more beneficial for tax income in the upcoming period.