Rhode Island becomes the seventh state to legalize online casino gambling

On Thursday June 22, Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee signed Senate Bill 948, which extends the monopoly of land-based casinos managed and operated by the Bally’s Group to online gambling. To cut a long story short, online table games and slot machines will be available in the USA’s smallest federal state from 2024.

Online casino gaming in Rhode Island: Bally’s ever-growing monopoly

Lawmakers in the Rhode Island Senate have voted to adopt the online gaming bill in the state, which has a population of just over one million. The bill was then sent to Governor McKee, who had until Thursday June 22 to sign or veto it. Unsurprisingly, the governor chose to sign the bill just hours before the deadline.

For the bill’s sponsor and President of the Rhode Island Senate, Dominick J. Ruggerio: ” (…) The new legislation offers additional comfort to Rhode Islanders who wish to enjoy existing table games via their mobile devices, including those in Twin River. The iGaming legislation we have just passed is constitutional. It is aimed at adult gamblers and contains a number of provisions to raise awareness and educate players about issues such as responsible gambling. What’s more, the new law preserves the revenue allocation percentages as they currently stand. “.

Gamesys, the only iGaming operator active in Rhode Island.

As mentioned above, the law extends Bally’s current monopoly to the iGaming market. This means that the company’s online arm, Gamesys, is the only iGaming operator in Rhode Island. the only operator active in the state of Rhode Island. The operator currently operates under several brands such as Virgin Casino, Tropicana Casino and Rainbow Riches Casino.

In the state of Rhode Island, the law imposes a 50% tax on online slot revenues, with the remainder split between Bally’s and supplier IGT. Table games are subject to a lower tax of 18%.

Online gambling in the most densely populated federal state in the USA will be regulated by the Rhode Island Division of the Lottery, which currently oversees the state’s two land-based Bally’s casinos: Bally’s Twin River Lincoln Casino and Bally’s Tiverton Casino & Hotel. The business will therefore be placed under the responsibility of the organization’s director, Mark Furcolo.

Recall that in 2021, state lawmakers voted to approve legislation granting the operator and its gaming supplier IGT a 20-year no-bid contract to manage the two aforementioned Rhode Island land-based casinos.

Kayleigh Williams