State-By-State Gambling & Legislative Impact Of Coronavirus

State-By-State Gambling & Legislative Impact Of Coronavirus
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As more and more states shut down daily activities, here is where gambling stands in each state and where the General Assembly sessions are as some states consider sports betting legislation.

Online casino gambling is legal in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware. Online poker is legal in those states plus Nevada. West Virginia and Michigan have legalized online casinos with target launch dates of later this year.

Social casinos, such as Chumba, are legal even in states that ban online gaming.


CASINOS: Wind Creek's three Alabama casinos — Atmore, Wetumpka and Montgomery — will have a soft reopening for small groups of invited guests on June 4, followed by a public reopening on June 8. New health and social-distancing measures include temperature checks for guests and employees and masks or face coverings will be required for everyone. Visitors are asked to bring their own masks, but they will be available at the facilities for a small donation supporting local first responders, health care providers, and COVID patient relief. To accommodate social distancing, casinos will be limiting the number of guests on the floor to roughly one-third of normal operations. Other casinos in the state have reopened or are getting ready to reopen under a "Safer At Home" order that was recently expanded to include casinos, camps and theaters.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature returned May 4 to pass the state's two budgets and adjourned on May 18. Gov. Kay Ivey on May 18 signed the spending bills, according to published reports. "While we have yet to know the full impact of COVID-19 on our state, these budgets will ensure continuity of government, while being fiscally responsible," Ivey said in a statement. Two gambling issues — establishing a state lottery and allowing the Poarch Band of Creek Indians to have casinos — did not gain traction in the abbreviated legislative session, according to the Associated Press.


CASINOS: There are no casinos in Alaska. State law allows for bingo halls and pull-tab games.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature passed emergency coronavirus legislation March 29. It allows Alaska to combat health and economic issues from the pandemic, according to the Anchorage Daily News. Access to the capitol in Juneau has been limited to lawmakers, staff, administration officials and credentialed media.


CASINOS: The Navajo Nation said its casino east of Flagstaff, the Twin Arrows Casino, would reopen by mid-June with new health and social-distancing guidelines in place, according to KNAU.

At least five Arizona casinos reopened May 15 — Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino in Maricopa, Fort McDowell Casino near Fountain Hills and Gila River's three casinos (Wild Horse Pass and Lone Butte near Chandler and Vee Quiva near Laveen) — under strict health and social distancing guidelines. And they will likely be opening in stages (certain areas of the casinos before others), according to other published reports. Gov. Doug Ducey’s stay-at-home order expired May 15.

Talking Stick Resort and Casino Arizona in Scottsdale reopened June 1, according to published reports. Desert Diamond's West Valley Casino plans to reopen June 5, according to a news release. Desert Diamond's other casinos will be closed at least through May.

Bucky’s Casino and Yavapai Casino in Prescott Valley announced on their website that they reopened on June 1. Mazatzal Hotel & Casino in Payson said on its website that it will begin a "phased reopening" on May 21. Casino Arizona and Talking Stick Resort near Scottsdale announced April 24 that they will remain closed through May.

LEGISLATURE: Legislature leaders reconvened May 1 and ended the current session, which had been on recess since March 27 because of the coronavirus. It pushed some pending bills, including sports betting, into the next legislative session.

Ducey said on May 12 that his state will be open to professional sports, without fans, beginning May 16. No professional league has said it is ready to begin that soon, but Ducey said he has had discussions with leaders of some of the leagues, according to the Associated Press. He did not say which ones or elaborate on what activities might take place in the state. All four major sports leagues have teams in Arizona.

RELATED: Get The Latest Coronavirus Related News On Cancellations & Postponements


CASINOS: The three casinos in the state reopened on May 18 under new capacity limits and health guidelines, according to a story in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Casinos will be limited to one-third of their capacity, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said. The casinos had been closed since March 17.

The three casino sportsbooks in Arkansas reported a 63% drop in March sports betting handle from February. The $1.59 million total sports betting handle in March from the Oaklawn Park, Southland and Saracen casinos was a $2.7 million fall from February’s sports betting handle.

LEGISLATURE: The capitol has been closed, but the legislature recently convened at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock arena. Members of the house followed social distancing guidelines by spreading out throughout the Jack Stevens Center and approved emergency coronavirus funding. Hutchinson delivered his State of the State address on April 8 as the house met at the Stevens Center and the senate in the state capitol. Three lawmakers in the state have tested positive for coronavirus.


CASINOS: Three San Francisco area tribal casinos — San Pablo Lytton Casino, Graton Resort & Casino and River Rock Casino — have not decided when to reopen, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Other casinos in the state have begun to reopen.

Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, operated by the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians, reopened June 2 with new health and social-distancing guidelines in place, according to the Desert Sun of Palm Springs.

Cache Creek Casino Resort near Sacramento will reopen June 8, according to its website. Three other tribal casinos have picked the same date — Jackson Rancheria, Thunder Valley Casino Resort in Lincoln and Red Hawk Casino in Placerville. They will have new health and social-distancing measures in place. There will be hand sanitizers in the gaming areas, and players must have temperature checks and wear facemasks, according to published reports.

More Southern California casinos reopened May 22. The casinos reopening that day — Spotlight 29 Casino in Coachella and Tortoise Rock Casino in Twentynine Palms; Harrah’s Resort Southern California near Valley Center; and Morongo Casino, Resort & Spa near Cabazon.

Viejas Casino and Resort in Alpine (San Diego County) reopened May 18, according to the Associated Press. There was a large crowd to get in and people had to have their temperatures taken and wear masks, the AP reported. Three other San Diego County casinos reopened — Sycuan Casino Resort near El Cajon, Jamul Casino in Jamul and Valley View Casino & Hotel near Valley Center. Sycuan reopened May 20; Jamul reopened May 21 and Valley View reopened May 22.

The Pechanga Tribe reopened the Pechanga Resort Casino, located about halfway between Los Angeles and San Diego, on June 1. Limited gaming was allowed at the reopening.

The Press-Enterprise of Riverside has an updated list of Southern California casino reopenings.

LEGISLATURE: The Senate Governmental Organization committee voted 9-3 on June 2 to refer a constitutional amendment (SCA-6) putting sports betting on the November ballot to the Senate Appropriations committee. Both sides on opposite ends of the issue, the card rooms and the state tribes, gave testimony on the bill before it was advanced. Because it's a constitutional amendment, it requires approval of two-thirds of the membership in each chamber.

The legislature, which had recessed because of the pandemic, returned this week to work on passing a budget. It must do so by June 15. Gov. Gavin Newsom has to sign it before July.

The original California stay at home order in the state has had an effect on the state's tribes getting enough signatures to have a sports betting measure placed on the November ballot. The tribe needs about a million valid signatures to get the question on the ballot and the signatures need to be verified by the state. With California residents banned from public contact, getting the required signatures for sports betting and other ballot initiatives could be difficult, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Not getting the measure on the ballot actually could lead to a better bill. The current measure does not allow for mobile sports betting.

Newsom said at a news conference on May 18 that pro sports and sporting events in the state could return in the first week of June without fans.


CASINOS: The two counties that are home to Colorado’s casinos are preparing plans to reopen, according to The Denver Post. Gilpin County has submitted a request for a variance from the state’s “safer-at-home” restrictions and Teller County is working on resubmitting its plan to reopen the casinos. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment rejected Teller County's plan in late May.

The Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission spent nearly all of its five-hour meeting on May 21 considering a change to Gaming Regulation 30-1401, the tiered tax rate the casinos pay. Commission members heard testimony from, among others, the municipalities that would face budget shortfalls because of a reduced rate, and the Colorado Gaming Association, which said lowering the rate would help the state's 33 casinos rebound from being closed since mid-March. The commission unanimously voted to keep the current tax rate tiers for Fiscal Year 2021 while acknowledging the pain suffered by all from the coronavirus.

The state launched its sports betting market on May 1, as originally planned. The sportsbooks in Colorado now up and running are BetMGM, BetMonarch (Monarch Casino Resort), BetRivers, DraftKings, FanDuel and FOX Bet. FOX Bet went live on May 19. SBK (or getsbk) is approved and could also launch soon.

Century Casinos, Inc. announced May 19 that it has reached an agreement with bet365 to become the company's second internet sports betting operator partner in the state, according to a news release. Century, through a subsidiary, has a master license. bet365 will have to be approved by the state gaming board.

International Game Technology (IGT) announced in a news release on May 19 that its PlaySports platform will power retail and mobile sports betting at Wild Card Saloon and Sasquatch Casino in Black Hawk. Both casinos are owned and operated by Ed & Shirley's Inc.

A story in the Denver Post reported that the most popular sport to gamble on among Coloradans since sports betting launched has been table tennis, which had the most bets by volume and dollar amount in the first 10 days, according to DraftKings data. UFC was second, followed by Korean baseball and Belarus Premier League Soccer, according to The Post.

Casinos are likely to stay closed through late May under the "Safer At Home" policy in place. Full House Resorts, owner of Bronco Billy's Casino in Cripple Creek, announced in an earnings call on May 13 that it would reopen the Colorado casino on June 14. says it has been granted a Colorado license. It also operates in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indiana.

The 33 casinos in mountain towns in Colorado were closed March 16 by the state. Casinos can partner with sportsbooks (either for land-based operations or online). Colorado became just the second state to legalize sports betting with a ballot measure when Proposition DD was approved by voters in November.

Gov. Jared Polis issued guidelines for the next phase of reopening the state. Called "Safer At Home," some retail businesses have reopened with curbside pickup on April 27. Retail shops opened for customers on May 1 under strict health and social-distancing measures. Commercial businesses reopened May 4 with up to 50 percent of employees working in-person.

More On Colorado Sports Betting:

LEGISLATURE: The legislature ended its temporary adjournment on May 26 and practiced social-distancing measures throughout the state capitol. On March 14, the legislative session was suspended. The legislature must pass a state budget. The Colorado Supreme Court ruled April 1 that state lawmakers don’t have to meet for 120 consecutive days during a declared public health emergency, according to the Denver Post.


CASINOS: Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket and the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville had soft reopenings on May 30, two days earlier than they had originally planned to reopen. Gov. Ned Lamont, who had been at odds with the tribes over reopening, was on board with their plans. He announced on May 29 that the casinos "took to heart some of the thoughts we had" and were allowed to reopen early. They reopened to the public on June 1. The casinos had been working on new social distancing and health guidelines. Hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes were prevalent throughout the casinos and every other slot machine was open to create proper distances between players. Body temperatures were checked as patrons entered the building and cards were swapped out more frequently at each table.

LEGISLATURE: Lamont has selected Rob Simmelkjaer, 48, who spent his career working at NBC Sports and ESPN to be the next chairman of the Connecticut Lottery Corp. governing board. After NBC Sports and ESPN, Simmelkjaer founded Persona Media, a Norwalk, Connecticut-based social media startup.

The legislature ended its session early on April 21. The state has awarded Scientific Games Corp. a new, five-year contract to serve as the Connecticut Lottery's primary instant game provider, according to a news release April 13. The deal increases the company's partnership with the state, becoming primary provider. Scientific Games has been a supplier of instant games to Connecticut for more than 40 years, the release said.

RELATED: Online Gaming Could Help Offset Post-COVID-19 Economic Downturn


CASINOS: Casinos reopened on June 1 under new health and social-distancing guidelines. The state's stay-at-home order was in place through May. Casinos had to present a safety plan, keep capacity at 30%, have eight feet between slots and other gaming machines and disinfect those machines every 15 minutes to two hours, according to published reports. Horse racing tracks also resumed racing without fans on June 1.

Even though the state is losing revenue from casinos being closed since mid-March, Vernon Kirk, director of the state lottery, told The News Journal of Wilmington, Delaware, that there is no timetable for adding mobile sports betting. Kirk said it is not on the lottery's "front burner." Sports betting is available at the three brick-and-mortar casinos — Delaware Park, Dover Downs and Harrington — but not through mobile, even though it is legal in the state.

Delaware's April iGaming report showed that revenue was $856,182, a 66% increase from March ($514,959) and more than triple the amount from April 2019 ($263,183), according to the Delaware Lottery, which oversees gaming in the state.

LEGISLATURE: The state's presidential primary, originally scheduled for April 28 but moved to June 2 because of the coronavirus, has now been postponed to July 7, according to PBS station WHYY in Philadelphia. The legislative session is tentatively scheduled to reconvene on May 26. House and Senate leaders announced the decision March 18.


CASINOS: The Seminole Hard Rock Poker Room in Tampa reopened on May 21. After the initial customers entered to new health and social-distancing measures, people waited in line into the evening to get in. The new guidelines including having the poker room at 50% capacity (23 of 46 tables); active tables with Plexiglass dividers; games run at a maximum of 6 handed; and employees and guests were required to wear masks (gloves are optional); and cards and chips were cleaned on a regular basis, according to the casino's website.

The Seminole Tribe of Florida is "in discussions" on when to reopen its other casinos using the Tampa casino as a guide, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. The tribe closed its casinos — Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood; Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa; Seminole Casino Hotel Immokalee; Seminole Casino Brighton; Seminole Casino Coconut Creek and Seminole Classic Casino Hollywood Calder Casino and The Casino at Gulfstream Park in South Florida — on March 20.

Some restaurants and stores in Florida were allowed to reopen at 25% capacity on May 4.

LEGISLATURE: Gov. Ron DeSantis in mid-May said that professional sports teams are welcome to practice and play — without fans — in Florida if they can’t hold practices or games in their own states, according to published reports. Earlier that week Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey made the same offer to pro sports teams. Florida has already hosted live UFC events without fans.

The legislative session ended March 13 without sports betting legislation and without a new compact deal with the Seminole Tribe, which had been paying $350 million a year to the state.



CASINOS: There are no casinos in Georgia.

LEGISLATURE: State officials on April 24 allowed some nonessential businesses to reopen. Restaurants and theaters well allowed to reopen on April 27. Gov. Brian Kemp eased restrictions by allowing gyms, barber shops, hair salons, tattoo parlors and bowling alleys to reopen. Georgia had two sports betting proposals that failed to make enough headway before a legislative deadline passed, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. House Resolution 378 would have amended the state constitution to allow certain types of sports betting, but the measure never came to a full House vote. The amendment would have permitted casino gambling as well as sports betting, including parimutuels. Senate Bill 403 also dealt with sports betting but it also failed to make the March 12 deadline so Georgia sports betting will have to wait until 2021. The General Assembly suspended its session indefinitely after March 13, according to a release from the legislature. The house and senate said they will reconvene at a future date.


CASINOS: There are no casinos in Hawaii.

LEGISLATURE: A stay-at-home order is in place through May. it was extended by the governor in late April. Hawaii lawmakers on March 17 indefinitely suspended the legislative session, according to the Associated Press. The recess began March 18.


CASINOS: The Coeur d'Alene Casino reopened on May 1. The Coeur d’Alene tribe started the process with a limited opening of the Coeur d'Alene Casino Resort Hotel on April 27, followed by the casino's reopening. New health guidelines for casino visitors and employees have been put in place, including masks and fewer games. Other tribal entities and facilities say they will also begin their phased re-openings. Other casinos in the state, including The Nez Perce Tribe planned to open the Clearwater River and It’se Ye-Ye casinos, reopened mid-May.

LEGISLATURE: The senate ended its legislative session on March 19. The house ended its session March 20, according to the Associated Press.


CASINOS: The Illinois Gaming Board has published emergency rules that would allow co-branding for online sports betting. According to the gaming board website, an emergency rule is an adopted rule that becomes immediately effective upon first filing with the Secretary of State and automatically expires after 150 days. Illinois took its first sports bet in a brick-and-mortar casino on March 9.

Illinois lawmakers on May 23 approved a Chicago casino, according to published reports. A spending package to get Illinois through the rest of the year, and next, passed early Sunday. Saturday was the fourth day of a special session. The Senate approved the casino plan 42-14, and it will be sent to Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s desk, who has indicated in the past that he would sign it. The state’s capital programs would get $45 million upfront in licensing fees before the casino opened, according to bill sponsor Sen. Bill Cunningham, of Chicago.

The state's stay-at-home order is in place through May. The Illinois Gaming Board has announced that the state’s 10 casinos will remain closed "until further notice," extending a temporary order.

LEGISLATURE: Senate President Don Harmon is seeking more than $41 billion from federal lawmakers as part of the next coronavirus stimulus package, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled April 16 that daily fantasy sports do not fit the state law's definition of gambling, according to Capitol News Illinois. In the legislature, the house has gone on recess indefinitely. The senate has adjourned until at least April 28.


CASINOS: The Indiana Gaming Commission on June 1 suspended betting on lower-tier table tennis events, while it conducts a review of leagues and their relationship to sanctioning bodies to determine whether integrity policies apply, according to ESPN, which published a report on May 25 about the legitimacy of table tennis matches.

Also on June 1, the IGC added Professional Bull Riding and the Premier Lacrosse League to the list of sports that sportsbooks in Indiana can offer wagers on, according to the gaming commission, which updated the list of Approved Events for Sports Wagering. It updated its PGA and LPGA sports betting options on May 18 and had previously added the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) League.

CHECK OUT: More about Indiana sports betting and gaming

The IGC has given Caesars Interactive Entertainment full mobile sports betting authorization through its Hammond Horseshoe Casino. It had been operating under a temporary vendor's license since August.

The state's only tribal casino, Four Winds Casino in South Bend, announced June 1 that it plans to reopen June 15, along with the tribe's three Michigan casinos. Boyd Gaming Corp., which operates two Indiana casinos — Blue Chip Casino in Michigan City and Belterra Casino in Florence — has not announced a reopening date, according to the South Bend Tribune.

Gov. Eric Holcomb announced on May 1 the next steps the state will be taking to reopen safely. The gaming commission, on its website, said no reopening dates for casinos have been determined at this time, but "it is not anticipated that casinos will open until after the beginning of phase 4," which is mid-June. The commission has provided guidelines for reopening Indiana casinos and will post opening dates as they are determined. The guidelines include presenting a detailed plan before reopening.

The Indiana Gaming Commission announced March 14 that the 13 state-regulated gaming facilities had to close.

LEGISLATURE: Phase 2 of Gov. Eric Holcomb's "Back On Track Indiana" plan to slowly reopen the state began May 4 and was in effect until May 24. It continues to ease some of the restrictions that have been in place since mid-March. At this time, casinos are not reopening.


CASINOS: Two properties owned by Eldorado Resorts — Isle Casino Hotel Bettendorf and Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo — reopened June 1, according to a company news release. The company said it is adhering to regulations imposed by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds that limit capacity to 50% to make sure that social-distancing guidelines are met.

The Hard Rock Sioux City reopened June 2 with new social-distancing and health measures in place, according to the Sioux City Journal. The Grand Falls Casino & Golf Resort in Lyon County reopened June 1 along with more than a dozen Iowa casinos. Casinos were allowed to reopen June 1 at 50% capacity and with other health and social-distancing measures in place.

Wild Rose Casino in Jefferson reopened June 1, the Lakeside Hotel Casino in Osceola reopened June 3, the Prairie Meadows will remain closed until June 15 and the Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel in Tama will reopen July 1, according to KCCI.

The casinos first closed in mid-March and the order has been extended three times. Some businesses, including restaurants, fitness centers and barber shops/salons began reopening May 15.

Scientific Games announced recently that it had secured a 10-year extension of its contract with the Iowa Lottery for a new statewide gaming system.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session has been suspended. It was originally scheduled to return April 15.


CASINOS: Boot Hill Casino in Dodge City and Pittsburg's Kansas Crossing Casino reopened May 22, and the Kansas Star Casino in Mulvane reopened May 23, according to the Associated Press. Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway reopened slot machines on May 25 and Powhattan's Sac and Fox Casino reopened on June 1.

The casinos that have reopened checked temperatures of people entering and added additional health and social-distancing measures. Casinos were allowed to reopen May 22 under the state's "Phase Two" plans.

LEGISLATURE: The statehouse has been shut down to the public — only legislators, staff, executive branch employees and lobbyists are permitted. The legislature continues to have committee meetings and is also working on the state budget and any emergency measures, but is recessed until April 27.


CASINOS: There are no casinos or sports betting in Kentucky, where horse racing is king. The Churchill Downs spring meet opened on May 16. Live racing without fans will continue Thursdays through Saturdays. There will also be a special race on Memorial Day (May 25). "There will be no fans for racing," Gov. Andy Beshear said April 29. "This is one of the most detailed plans that we have seen about specific security checks that everybody has to go through and be temperature-checked to masking to having a very limited group that is there.” The Kentucky Derby, which would have been run May 2, has been moved to Sept. 5.

The state was considering legislation to expand gambling beyond horse race betting, but it won't happen this year. There is an indefinite stay-at-home order in place, but Kentucky is working with surrounding states to coordinate when they should reopen.

LEGISLATURE: State lawmakers on April 1 passed a streamlined one-year budget that keeps government spending at current levels, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader. It didn't include a new revenue stream that sports betting legislation could have added.


CASINOS: Penn National Gaming reopened its five casinos in Louisiana — Boomtown Casino Bossier City, Boomtown Casino New Orleans, L’Auberge Casino Baton Rouge, L’Auberge Casino Lake Charles and Margaritaville Casino Bossier City — on May 18. Casinos in the state have reopened under stricter health and social-distancing measures, including 25% capacity in the facilities. Visitors waited in long lines to get into the facilities, according to published reports.

Boyd Gaming reopened the Delta Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel, Evangeline Downs Racetrack Casino Hotel and Treasure Chest Casino on May 20. It will resume operations at the Amelia Belle Casino and Sam's Town Shreveport in the coming weeks, the company said.

The state began its first phase of reopening on May 15. Gov. John Bel Edwards announced May 11 that he would allow casinos, gyms, barber shops, hair salons, bars with food permits and others to reopen at 25% capacity, according to a story in The Advocate of Baton Rouge. Other businesses, as well as churches, can also increase to a quarter of their normal capacity. A stay-at-home order had been in place through mid-May.

The state’s 20 casinos shut down March 17.

LEGISLATURE: The head of Louisiana's gambling regulatory board, Ronnie Jones, did not have his reappointment confirmed by the legislature on June 1. According to the Associated Press, Jones, who was reappointed to the position by Edwards in July, was among 11 appointees selected by statewide elected officials to serve on boards and commissions who did not receive approval from the Senate.

Sports betting legislation putting the question to legalize sports wagering before voters in the state’s 64 parishes in November will soon move to the governor for his signature after the House passed SB 130 on Wednesday. Legislation had moved through the House and Senate and one of those branches needed to approve the other's bill. The legislature has also called a special session to begin right after the normal session ends June 1 to consider budget items. Fantasy sports regulations are on the agenda, also. DFS was approved by the parishes in 2018, but lawmakers have yet to agree on regulations.


CASINOS: The casinos are closed indefinitely, but have been working on reopening plans.

LEGISLATURE: On May 21, the state Gambling Control Board approved online betting on horse races, according to published reports. Bettors can place wagers on races around the world online. The governor vetoed a bill that would have legalized sports betting and the House failed to override the veto in February after the Senate had done so.


CASINOS: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan's "safe at home" policy became a "safer at home" policy on May 15. While there is not a timetable for reopening the casinos, plans are being developed to ensure the health and safety of employees and patrons, Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director Gordon Medenica said in a news release. MGM recently released its safety procedures for reopening its casinos, including the MGM National Harbor in Prince George's County.

The Baltimore Sun reported on May 23 that the casinos would use thermal cameras to take temperatures and were putting acrylic dividers in place at table games. They were also providing disposable facemasks.

In April, Medenica said the state could see revenue fall by $250 million this fiscal year because revenue from casinos and lottery games has declined.

The state’s six casinos, three horse racing tracks and off-track betting parlors were closed indefinitely on March 15. On March 30, he issued an indefinite stay-at-home order for state residents.

The state lottery on Tuesday reported a loss of $60 million in year-over-year April revenue because the six casinos in the state have been shut down in mid-March.

Overall revenue is down more than $85 million in the past 10 months compared to Fiscal Year 2019. The state had no revenue from casino gaming in April 2020.

The casinos reported $145.2 million in April 2019 revenue with $60 million going to the state to fund education ($45 million to the Education Trust Fund), community and horse racing initiatives, according to the commission's report.

LEGISLATURE: Senate and house leaders on April 20 announced they will not hold a special session in May. Maryland’s General Assembly ended its legislative session on March 18 because of coronavirus concerns, but not before approving a sports betting bill asking voters in November to legalize sports betting.

The Senate voted March 18 to approve the bill after the House added a key amendment the day before. If voters approve the measure, the legislature will have to work out how sports betting will be implemented, tax rates, and determining who gets licenses. The voter referendum is required by Maryland law.

The legislative session was supposed to end April 6, and this is believed to be the first time a session has been shortened since the Civil War.


CASINOS: Gov. Charlie Baker will decide on June 6 when the state will move to Phase 2 of its reopening plan, according to Phase 2 will include casino hotels and restaurants. Gaming floors will be part of Phase 3, which could start in late June at the earliest.

Massachusetts' three casinos were closed indefinitely by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission beginning March 15 and the closure was extended through May. Plans are now being reviewed by the gaming commission to allow casinos to reopen include thermal cameras to take temperatures, tables and slot machines being relocated to ensure proper social distancing, masks worn by employees and patrons, increased hand sanitizer stations and Plexiglass shields between employees and patrons, according to NBC Boston.

March gross gaming revenue for the casinos was less than half of February's total. Encore Boston Harbor reported $20,525,175.42; MGM Springfield, $9,328,326.66; and Plainridge Park, $4,756.695.12 in March, according to

LEGISLATURE: The legislature is meeting and a sports-betting bill is still active and could be included in the state budget.


CASINOS: Four Winds is planning to open its casinos on June 15, according to The Pokagon Gaming Authority announced the reopening date of the three Michigan properties — New Buffalo, Dowagiac and Hartford — and one in Indiana — South Bend. Four Winds has been working to develop a reopening plan with Pokagon gaming and health officials.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer loosened restrictions in some parts of the state, including the far north Upper Peninsula, where many of the tribal casinos are located. Whitmer signed an executive order May 18 allowing for partial reopening of bars and restaurants at 50% capacity there beginning May 22. The Traverse City area can also start reopening under the order.

Odawa Casino Mackinaw reopened on May 22 with enhanced safety and social-distancing measures, including wearing facemasks, in place, according to The Odawa Casino in Petoskey reopened May 29, as did the Leelanau Sands Casino and Lodge and Turtle Creek Casino and Hotel near Traverse City. They are owned and operated by the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians.

Northern Waters Casino Resort in Watersmeet, owned and operated by the Lac Vieux Desert Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, reopened on May 22, according to its website.

Saganing Eagles Landing Casino and Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort in Mount Pleasant reopened June 1, according to the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe. The FireKeepers Casino in Battle Creek, run by the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi, also reopened June 1.

The Island Resort and Casino, a tribal casino run by the Hannahville Indian Community in Harris near the Wisconsin border, posted new guidelines on its website for customers. It reopened May 16. It had been closed since March 21. Michigan’s state-at-home order is in effect until May 28.

Five Upper Peninsula casinos run by the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians — Christmas, Hessel, Manistique, Sault Ste. Marie and St. Ignacehas — reopened June 1.

CHECK OUT: More about Michigan sports betting and gaming

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan told the Detroit News that without a COVID-19 vaccine, the city's three casinos likely won't fully reopen. “I would be surprised if a vaccine develops within a year. So we're going to have to deal with it. Do the casinos end up reopening with 25% or 30% capacity? I don’t know,” Duggan told the newspaper. Taxes and development fees from the gaming houses brought in $184 million for Detroit last year, and $118 million for the state, and accounted for 20% of the city’s general fund.

Revenue from the three Detroit casinos declined steeply in March with a combined adjusted revenue of $57,445,827, the Michigan Gaming Control Board reported. That was down 52.8% from February’s $121,761,104 and down 59% year-over year. The three casinos in Detroit — MGM Grand, Greektown and MotorCity — closed March 16. The Greektown on March 30 opened 40 rooms for free to Detroit police officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians who are worried about going home and infecting family members with the coronavirus, according to the Detroit News.

Legal sports betting started in Michigan on March 11 after ceremonial first wagers were placed at the MGM Grand Detroit and Greektown casinos. The state’s 23 tribal casinos also shut down.

LEGISLATURE: The Michigan Gaming Control Board has begun accepting online gaming supplier licensing forms. It's another step the state is taking to have mobile sports betting in place in early 2021, if not sooner.

The gaming control board will soon allow online and mobile betting on horse races. Gaming control board director Richard Kalm issued the order on May 5 permitting third-party facilitators to acquire a license and offer advance deposit wagering.

The state's Horse Racing Law of 1995 was amended in December 2019 to allow bettors to create an account with a third-party facilitator and use a mobile device or computer to place bets online. Northville Downs, a harness racing track about 30 miles west of Detroit, is the only horse racing track in the state.


CASINOS: Prairie's Edge Casino Resort in Granite Falls reopened on May 18, the first day the state's new Stay Safe order, according to the casino's website. Two casinos in Prior Lake — Mystic Lake and Little Six Casinos — owned by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux reopened May 26, according to their websites. Treasure Island near Red Wing reopened June 1. Grand Casino Mille Lacs and Grand Casino Hinckley also plan to soon reopen.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature returned April 14 and approved a new coronavirus relief package.


CASINOS: Casinos reopened on May 21, according to published reports. Doors opened at 8 a.m. and some casinos had lines of people waiting to get in. The casinos have been taking steps to enhance safety measures and create social-distancing protocols.

Penn National Gaming announced that its Mississippi properties reopened that day including 1st Jackpot Casino Tunica, Ameristar Casino Hotel Vicksburg, Boomtown Casino Biloxi, Hollywood Casino Gulf Coast and Hollywood Casino Tunica. Boyd Gaming announced that the IP Casino Resort Spa in Biloxi and Sam's Town Hotel & Gambling Hall in Tunica reopened on May 21.

MGM Resorts reopened the Gold Strike Casino Resort in Tunic on May 25, followed by Biloxi's Beau Rivage Resort & Casino's on June 1, both in a limited capacity.

The gaming commission ordered casinos closed at midnight March 16, according to the Clarion Ledger.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature adjourned its legislative session indefinitely, according to The Ledger.


CASINOS: Three properties owned by Eldorado Resorts — The Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Boonville, Isle of Capri Casino Kansas City and Lumière Place Casino & Hotel — reopened June 1, according to a company news release. The company said it is limiting capacity in the casinos to ensure proper social distancing. Missouri’s 13 casinos began reopening June 1. The riverboat casinos have been closed since mid-March. The state also began lifting some stay-at-home restrictions for businesses.

MLB and the NBA ended contracts with lobbyists representing their Missouri sports-betting interests, according to a story in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The move comes after sports betting was gaining momentum in the state. But lawmakers cut their spring session short in mid-March. According to The Post-Dispatch, the legislature returned to pass budget and coronavirus measures, but is shying away from acting on many significant changes in state policy. “It appears we are running out of time to take action on both sports betting and video lottery,” Sen. Denny Hoskins, R-Warrensburg, who has sponsored various gambling bills in recent years, told the newspaper.

LEGISLATURE: The state has extended its contract with Scientific Games to produce Scratchers games through June 2021, according to a news release. Scientific Games, the world's largest supplier of lottery instant games, has been primary provider to the state since 2011, the release said. Legislators returned to work and passed a state budget and sent it to the senate, according to the Associated Press. The budget takes lost revenue because of the coronavirus into consideration. The state constitution requires the budget be passed by May 8.


CASINOS: Restaurants, bars, casinos and breweries began reopening May 4 under new health and safety guidelines. Some of the new regulations include social-distancing measures and a reduced capacity in the establishments. Officials at casinos in Billings and Butte spent the weekend spacing out machines to maintain social distancing and putting up shields to protect customers and employees, according to published reports.

LEGISLATURE: The state legislature is not in session. It had canceled scheduled committee meetings and allowed staff to work remotely.


CASINOS: Many tribal casinos remained open throughout the pandemic with extra safety precautions being taken.

LEGISLATURE: The Nebraska Legislature is on an indefinite recess and it is undetermined when the session will resume.


CASINOS: Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak said casinos could reopen June 4 as the state saw decreases in new cases and hospitalizations for about two weeks. The Gaming Control Board on May 27 issued updated health and safety guidelines for the reopening. In addition to social-distancing measures, some of the new requirements include checking temperatures upon entering; having an area where visitors can be tested for coronavirus and wait on the results; and making facemasks available to guests.

Most of the biggest Las Vegas casinos, including MGM Grand Caesars Palace, Bellagio, The Venetian and Wynn Resorts, plan to reopen June 4, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal. Boyd Gaming Corp. also announced that it would reopen nine of its Nevada properties that day — The Orleans, Gold Coast, Suncoast, Aliante, Cannery, Sam’s Town, Fremont, California and Jokers Wild. A list of scheduled June 4 casino reopenings in Las Vegas can be found here.

UFC held a card in Las Vegas without fans over the weekend and prominent boxing promoter Bob Arum plans to stage a card of five fights on June 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas after receiving local and state approval. The card would begin a series of fights over the next two months at the MGM Grand. There will be a second fight card two nights later, kicking off twice weekly shows at the hotel in June and July. The fights would be televised on ESPN.

The Colorado Belle in Laughlin won’t be reopening when the state gives casinos approval, according to the Las Vegas Sun. Employees have been laid off “indefinitely,” according to a statement released May 18 by parent company Golden Entertainment.

Station Casinos announced new safety guidelines for reopening and published reports indicate the casinos' poker rooms will not reopen when the rest of the properties do.

The state Gaming Control Board on May 7 approved guidelines for reopening casinos. Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox said the company will probably reopen both its strip resorts — Wynn Las Vegas and Encore — together at a limited capacity, the Las Vegas Sun reported. Casinos cannot reopen in the state until June 4. Casinos have been closed since mid-March.

Circa Sports started curbside sport betting at the Golden Gate Hotel and Casino on May 7, according to KSNV Ch. 3. It will be open seven days a week between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

The South Point Hotel Casino on South Las Vegas Boulevard launched a sports app for mobile betting on May 6, according to its website. New users can sign up, and existing customers can make deposits, without leaving their cars in a drive-thru at the property's valet entrance.

Once casinos reopen, Las Vegas-based GameCo will begin distributing skill-based video-game gambling devices in Nevada, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. A six-month field trial featuring two games — "Nothin’ but Net 2" and "All-Star Hoops" — was completed at four casino properties, The Linq, MGM Grand, and Park MGM in Las Vegas and Atlantis Casino Resort & Spa in Reno, the newspaper reported. The company said it hopes to offer other video-game gambling devices in Nevada.

The Lakeside Inn and Casino in Lake Tahoe announced on its website on April 14 that it was permanently closing after 35 years. "This decision was not made lightly. We hoped that we would be able to resume operations once this COVID-19 situation improved. However, that’s just not in the cards for us," the post read.

Also on April 14, the Nevada Gaming Control Board granted approval to offer wagers on these esport events — 2020 Overwatch League, 2020 League of Legends European Championship and the 2020 ESL ONE-DOTA Los Angeles. Earlier in April it approved wagering on the 2020 eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series. Nevada is one of the few states to allow eSports betting.

LEGISLATURE: The Nevada legislature is not in session. It only meets in odd-numbered years.

New Hampshire

CASINOS: Instant Win Gaming will become the "e-Instant" game supplier for the the New Hampshire Lottery, according to The lottery commission sought proposals for the development, design, implementation and related services for iLottery e-Instant Games tin the fall.

Some non-essential businesses in the state reopened May 11 under enhanced health and social distancing guidelines. Among the business reopening — golf courses, drive-in theaters, retail stores, barbers and hair salons, and campgrounds. Casinos remain closed.

The state lottery reported $8,768,769 in sports betting handle in March, down 60% from the $22,130,928 in total handle reported in February. State revenue in March from sports betting was $394,229, down 41% from February’s $671,435.

New Hampshire started offering eNASCAR betting this spring, according to the New Hampshire Lottery's web page of approved sports wagering leagues and events. “The New Hampshire Lottery is constantly looking for ways to engage our players and to attract new audiences and eNASCAR represents a strategic addition to our sports betting portfolio,” Charlie McIntyre, lottery executive director, said in a news release. “This new sporting event offers an exciting new opportunity for our players to experience the thrill of winning.”

Gov. Chris Sununu's stay-at-home order ended May 4.

LEGISLATURE: Legislative proceedings were suspended until May 4.

New Jersey

CASINOS: Gov. Phil Murphy said he hopes to reopen the nine casinos in Atlantic City by July 4 with enhanced safety and social-distancing measures in place, according to published reports. Murphy on June 1 was announcing details of the Stage 2 reopening. Reopening retail businesses, outdoor dining with reduced capacity and allowing libraries and museums to reopen while limiting the number of people are among the plans, according to the Associated Press.

The state's Division of Gaming Enforcement, which must give its approval before the nine casinos in Atlantic City can reopen, said it “has engaged with the casino industry to develop plans for the safe reopening of Atlantic City’s retail casino operations when authorized by the governor,” the AP reported.

The U.S. Supreme Court on May 18 declined to hear a dispute between professional sports leagues, the NCAA and the New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association. The case now goes back to federal court in New Jersey. A federal judge, after hearing testimony from both sides, will determine the amount of damages the horsemen’s association will receive.

Scientific Games and the Golden Nugget Online Casino will launch ReelPlay content, according to published reports. ReelPlay, a partner of Scientific Games, will include El Dorado Infinity Reels in the launch.

LEGISLATURE: A bill was introduced in the legislature on May 7 that provides "temporary modifications to payment and use of certain casino gaming taxes and fees due to COVID-19 Public Health Emergency and State of Emergency; allows full deduction of promotional gaming credits and certain coupons from gross revenues."

New Mexico

CASINOS: Casinos statewide closed in mid-March. The Navajo Nation said its three casinos in New Mexico — Fire Rock, Northern Edge and Flowing Water casinos — would reopen by mid-June, according to KRQU. New health and safety measures will be in place, including employees wearing facemasks. The Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise told the Associated Press that its employees are still being paid and are receiving health benefits.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session has ended.

New York

CASINOS: The Seneca Nation plans to reopen its gaming sites in Irving, Salamanca and Cuba, as well as larger casinos including the Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino, Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino, and Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino in early June, according to Buffalo NBC-TV affiliate WGRZ.

The Oneida Indian Nation tentatively plans to reopen three casinos — Turning Stone Resort Casino, Point Place Casino and Yellow Brick Road Casino — on June 10, according to a story on In addition to new health and social-distancing measures, the casinos will not allow anyone from outside a 120-mile radius of the casinos to enter, according to the report.

The website reported that the Lakeside Entertainment casino in Union Springs was the first gaming operation in New York to reopen. The slot machine-only facility, run by the Cayuga Nation, says it is exempt from the state restrictions imposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the report said. It also reopened under stricter health and social-distancing guidelines.

The Saratoga Casino and Hotel also announced on its website that it is working with the state on how to reopen, but said a reopening date "has not been determined."

As part of a three-state regional directive involving Connecticut, New York and New Jersey, casinos closed on March 16. New York sports betting rebounded in March with $99,514, according to figures posted by the New York State Gaming Commission. Despite being hardest hit by the coronavirus and not having mobile sports betting, New York saw a slight turnaround in sports betting revenue from its loss of $179,593 in February.

LEGISLATURE: The capitol and surrounding buildings have been closed to visitors. Three members of the New York State Assembly have tested positive for coronavirus. Cuomo and lawmakers reached a tentative budget agreement on April 1, according to news reports. The budget does not include mobile sports betting. Cuomo has been a staunch opponent of adding mobile sports betting in the state, even as revenue from sports betting in the state reaches new lows.

North Carolina

CASINOS: The two casinos in western North Carolina — Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in Cherokee and Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel in Murphy — reopened May 18 by reservation, according to the Harrah's Cherokee website. They had been closed since March 18. Both casinos have extensive health and social distancing measures in place, the report said. Employees will be screened, have their temperature checked and wear face masks. The stay-at-home order in the state expired May 8.

LEGISLATURE: The state legislature returned April 28 for the first time since the pandemic began. Lawmakers wore masks and followed social-distancing guidelines, according to the Raleigh News and Observer. The legislature will look to pass coronavirus relief measures and then adjourn until July or August.

North Dakota

CASINOS: The 4 Bears Casino in Minot reopened on May 16 under new health and social-distancing measures that included no blackjack or tables games, according to its website. It will be open Thursdays-Sundays. The Standing Rock Tribal Council will begin the reopening process for the Prairie Knights Casino and Resort near Fort Yates in Sioux County, according to a published report. It will tentatively reopen on May 29.

Dakota Nation Gaming Enterprise closed the Dakota Magic Casino & Hotel, Dakota Sioux Casino & Hotel, and Dakota Connection Casinos until further notice, according to the casinos' websites.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session meets in odd-numbered years.


CASINOS: Casinos and racinos in the state remain closed. Horse racing was allowed to resume May 22. MGM Northfield Park on May 8 warned that it might have to lay off some of the 900 employees it temporarily furloughed, according to the Akron Beacon Journal. The state’s four casinos and seven racinos closed March 13 after Gov. Mike DeWine banned mass gatherings of more than 100 people.

Revenue at the casinos from the first 13 days of March was $71,902,867. The combined revenue in February was $171,423,785, a state record. The month-over-month decline was 58%.

LEGISLATURE: HB 194, which legalizes sports betting, was approved by the House on May 28 by an overwhelming 83-10 vote. It now heads to the Senate, which has its own gambling bill. The Senate bill, SB 111, has some differences including having a different agency oversee sports betting. The differences in the bills will need to be worked out and pass the Senate before moving to DeWine.

DeWine has extended the state’s stay-at-home order until May 29 with some exceptions. On May 4, construction, manufacturing and distribution operations can start up again and offices can reopen. Nonessential retail stores can reopen on May 12.


CASINOS: The River Spirit Casino Resort in Tulsa reopened May 31 to VIP guests and to the public on June 1, according to the Tulsa World. In addition to the pandemic, the casino had to close last year for two months because the Arkansas River flooded. The casino has enhanced safety and social-distancing measures.

The WinStar Casino in Thackerville and Choctaw Casino & Resorts in Durant reopened May 27, according to media reports. Both are close to the border with Texas.

Chickasaw Nation began a phased reopening of its casinos and gaming centers on May 27. Chickasaw Nation officials reopened at 25% of full capacity.

The Thunderbird Casinos in Norman and Shawnee, operated by the Absentee Shawnee Tribe, reopened May 11 and in Norman the casino had a line nearly 250 people long, according to The Oklahoman. Temperatures were taken at the door, masks were handed out and guests had to sit at slot machines at least six feet away from the nearest person.

Two other tribal casinos in Oklahoma — 7 Clans Casino Resort and Tonkawa Hotel & Casino — have reopened, according to the American Gaming Association. Casinos in Oklahoma were temporarily closed on March 23.

The Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association suspended the memberships of the Otoe-Missouria Tribe and Comanche Nation for signing gaming compacts with Gov. Kevin Stitt, according to The Oklahoman. They are suspended for the remainder of the calendar year, after which time they could seek reinstatement, the association said in a statement released Thursday.

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter issued a formal opinion May 5 saying Stitt cannot enter into new gaming compacts with the two tribal nations that authorize sports betting. Sports betting has not been approved by the state legislature.

Stitt announced on April 21 that he reached new gaming compacts with the tribes. "The new compacts recognize the sovereign rights of individual tribes to conduct gaming in Oklahoma. The compacts take a sound approach to assessing the value of substantial exclusivity in a modernized tribal gaming industry, and importantly, the compacts expand opportunity for both the compacting tribes and the state to compete in future gaming markets," Stitt said in a statement.

The Department of Interior needs to ratify the two compacts. In addition to his formal opinion, Hunter also sent a letter to Secretary of the Interior David Berhardt requesting that the secretary reject the agreements.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature recently gave Stitt additional powers to deal with the coronavirus pandemic under the state's declaration of a health emergency, according to The Oklahoman.


CASINOS: Four casinos in the the state reopened recently — The Mill Casino Hotel in North Bend opened May 18, the Chinook Winds Casino Resort in Lincoln City opened May 21, Three Rivers Casino in Florence and Coos Bay and Seven Feathers Casino Resort opened May 22, according to the Associated Press. All will have new health and social-distancing guidelines in place.

LEGISLATURE: Could call a special session to address coronavirus and any key items left uncertain by the pandemic.


CASINOS: The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has outlined the minimum requirements for the state’s casinos to reopen their facilities. The 10-page guideline document is available on the board’s website. The requirements include new health and social-distancing measures. In addition, "poker rooms are not authorized to operate due to players handling cards and chips,” the board said in the document. Poker room operations will be re-examined based upon changing guidance from health officials, the gaming control board said.

A date for reopening casinos has not been determined, but some counties are expected to move to the "green phase" this week. Gov. Tom Wolf, in a letter to the state Horse Racing Commission, said that entertainment venues like casinos, theaters and horse racing tracks will be able to reopen when counties enter the green phase. Some counties began reopening May 8 and have moved from the red phase to yellow, but a timetable for the green phase has not been established. There are three thoroughbred tracks in the state — PARX in Bensalem, Penn National Race Course near Hershey and Presque Isle Downs in Erie. Each has a casino. All casinos were closed March 17 by order of the state Gaming Control Board.

With the state's casinos closed because of the coronavirus, DraftKings Online Casino went live May 1 through a partnership with Hollywood Casino in the Poconos. The same week, Caesars Online Casino went live through its partnership with Harrah's Philadelphia. Online casino gaming is legal in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware and online poker sites are legal in those three and Nevada.

Wind Creek Bethlehem on April 29 filed a petition to conduct sports wagering with the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, according to a story in the Allentown Morning Call.

Gross revenue for iGaming in March in Pennsylvania was $24,265,720. That's a 24.5% increase over February's $19,490,815. The figures including online slots, poker and table games.

RELATED: More on Pennsylvania casinos and online gambling

LEGISLATURE: Lawmakers and Wolf agreed March 22 to postpone the state's primary from April 28 until June 2.

Rhode Island

CASINOS: A Superior Court judge has denied a request for an injunction to stop sports betting in Rhode Island, according to the Newport Daily News. Former Providence mayoral candidate Daniel Harrop sought a summary judgment over his claim that sports betting online and at the state’s two casinos violated the state constitution, the newspaper reported. The judge ruled that voters had approved sports betting in 2012 and 2016.

The Twin River Casino Hotel in Lincoln and the Tiverton Casino Hotel, the two casinos in the state, plan to reopen June 8 by invitation only to selected members, according to the Twin Rivers website. There will be new health and social-distancing measures in place. Temperature checks are included in the new guidelines and each facility will be limited to about 25% of capacity. Only video slots spaced six feet apart and virtual table games will be available at the beginning, according to the casinos.

International Game Technology (IGT) and William Hill have enhanced the Sportsbook Rhode Island mobile app and website, according to Providence Business News. The revamped app and website will include an elevated interface and bigger betting menu, among other improvements. Bettors will have a wider selection of futures and prop-bets, and sporting events such as Russian table tennis and Taiwanese basketball, PBN reported.

The state's stay-at-home order was lifted May 8.

LEGISLATURE: The state ethics commission ruled that Gov. Gina Raimondo did not commit an ethics violation during negotiations for a no-bid, 20-year lottery contract with IGT (International Game Technology). The commission voted 7-1 on April 28 to dismiss the complaint, according to the Providence Journal. All legislative sessions have been postponed indefinitely.

South Carolina

CASINOS: There are no casinos in South Carolina. The South Carolina Education Lottery recently awarded a new six-year contract to Scientific Games to provide "warehousing and distribution services with a new state-of-the-art distribution facility, a next generation lottery mobile app and interactive services," according to a news release.

LEGISLATURE: The state's stay-at-home order was lifted on May 4. It makes the governor's "home or work" order voluntary and allows some restaurants to begin serving patrons under strict guidelines. State parks reopened on May 1. The legislature returned April 8 to consider emergency legislation and adopt a resolution to allow it to operate after the session ends May 14, according to The State.

South Dakota

CASINOS: The Royal River Casino & Hotel in Flandreau, owned and operated by the Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe, reopened on May 29. Flandreau is about 45 miles north of Sioux Falls.

Casinos in Deadwood reopened around May 10. The Deadwood City Commission voted on May 7 to permit casinos and other businesses in the city to reopen, according to the Deadwood Advantage website.

The decision allowed for slots and table games to begin under social distancing and health guidelines. Deadwood mayor David Ruth Jr. on March 23 ordered the 25 casinos in the city to close temporarily.

LEGISLATURE: The state attorney general recently released the ballot explanations for the November election, including Constitutional Amendment B entitled “An amendment to the South Dakota Constitution authorizing the Legislature to allow sports wagering in Deadwood,” according to the Capital Journal of Pierre. The explanation reads: The constitution currently authorizes the legislature to allow certain types of gaming in the city of Deadwood: roulette, keno, craps, limited card games, and slot machines. This constitutional amendment authorizes the legislature to also include wagering on sporting events as a type of gaming allowed in Deadwood. Under federal law, any gaming authorized by the legislature to be offered in Deadwood would also be allowed at on-reservation tribal casinos upon amendments to current tribal gaming compacts. Vote ‘Yes' to adopt the amendment. Vote "No" to leave the constitution as it is.

The legislature approved a bill in March asking for the referendum. The legislature ended its session on March 30.


CASINOS: IGT (International Game Technology) recently announced a two-year contract extension with the Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation through June 2027. As part of the agreement, IGT will upgrade the lottery's loyalty website and mobile app, providing new player convenience features, according to a news release.

There are no casinos in Tennessee, but an all-mobile sports betting market is getting closer. The Tennessee Education Lottery Corporation approved sports betting rules on April 15, but they include a controversial 10% hold. The state hopes to have sports betting up and running when sports return. The state is under a stay-at-home order through April.

LEGISLATURE: The legislature recessed on March 19 until at least June 1.


CASINOS: The Texas Supreme Court on May 8 sent a case back to a lower court involving the city of Fort Worth and operators of eight-liner gambling machines, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The Supreme Court ordered the Second Court of Appeals in Fort Worth to determine the legality and constitutionality of the machines.

Tribal casinos in the state have voluntarily closed. A stay-at-home order that was in place through April has ended, but some counties have extended closures.

LEGISLATURE: Was not in session in 2020. It meets in odd-numbered years.


CASINOS: There are no casinos in Utah. The state prohibits gambling.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session ended March 13.


CASINOS: There are no casinos in Vermont.

LEGISLATURE: The state is under a stay-at-home order until May 15. The senate met March 24 by phone and the house conducted a token session March 24. Further sessions could be temporarily suspended. A sports betting bill had been introduced.


CASINOS: The Virginia State Lottery posted key dates and frequently asked questions Monday on sports betting and the first sports bet in Virginia might not happen until 2021. In the “FAQs On Virginia Sports Betting” section on the state lottery website, one of the questions was “When will I be able to place a legal sports bet?” The answer: “Legal sports betting in Virginia will not be available before mid-to-late December 2020, at the earliest.”

IGT (International Game Technology) announced April 28 that it has signed a six-year contract with the Virginia Lottery to provide Scratcher tickets, strategic planning and services, according to a news release. Under the agreement, IGT will become the primary vendor for instant ticket games for the first time in Virginia. The contract will run through June 30, 2026.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session has ended, but the General Assembly reconvened on April 22 to consider amendments the governor made to legislation that was passed before the body adjourned in March.


CASINOS: The Swinomish Casino & Lodge in Anacortes opened May 28, according to its website. As with other casinos in the state, it was doing so with new health and social-distancing guidelines in place. The Silver Reef Casino Resort in Frendale reopened May 21 to members of the Lummi Nation and to the public on May 22 , according to the Bellingham Herald.

The Tulalip Resort Casino and Quil Ceda Creek Casino reopened May 26, the Tulalip Tribes announced on the casinos' website. It included new health and safety guidelines.

Three other tribal casinos reopened May 18 — Emerald Queen, Little Creek in Shelton and Nisqually Red Wind in Olympia, according to published reports. They had health and social-distancing measures in place in place.

The Angel of the Winds Casino Resort in Arlington, run by the Stillaguamish Tribe, reopened May 13, according to a story in The Seattle Times. It is the first casino in western Washington to reopen since a stay-at-home order in the state was put into place in March and runs through May.

As part of the reopening, the casino put new health and social-distancing measures in place. One of the new changes, according to The Times, is a requirement that all guests have a cellphone to use as part of the check-in process.

In addition, the Angel of the Winds Casino Resort announced recently on its social media accounts that the facility will be smoke-free. It said it will be the first smoke-free casino in the state.

Northern Quest Resort and Casino near Spokane and the Kalispel Casino in Cusick, run by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians, reopened May 5, according to the websites of both casinos.

The tribes are not bound by state orders. The tribal casinos fund many tribal government operations, and have thousands of employees, the Associated Press reported.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative session wrapped up March 13. Earlier this month the senate passed legislation to legalize sports betting in the tribal casinos and Gov. Jay Inslee signed the bill into law on March 25. In doing so, Washington became the 21st state with legal sports betting (plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico) and the first to sign legislation into law do so in 2020.

West Virginia

CASINOS: The Hollywood Casino & Inn at Charles Town Races, Mardi Gras Casino & Resort at Nitro, Wheeling Island Hotel-Casino-Racetrack, Mountaineer Casino Racetrack & Resort in Hancock County and The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs can reopen on June 5 under strict health and social-distancing guidelines, according to published reports. Gov. Jim Justice, whose family owns the Greenbrier, made the announcement on May 18.

Justice also announced that limited video lottery retailers will be permitted to reopen May 30.

West Virginia sportsbooks took in $2,965,302 for the period from March 29 to May 1. West Virginia reports its figures weekly. The week ending May 2 saw $1,063,604 in sports betting handle, double the amount in any of the previous four weeks, undoubtedly helped by NFL betting on that week’s draft.

LEGISLATURE: The state lottery commission on April 29 approved emergency rules for iGaming, which would allow video poker and other casino-style games via mobile apps, the Gazette-Mail reported. The emergency rule could be submitted to the secretary of state later this month governing iGaming and it could begin in West Virginia over the summer, according to website Metro News. The temporary rule will be replaced by permanent rules that are expected to be filed in the fall for review by the legislature during the 2021 regular session. The current legislative session has ended.


CASINOS: Some casinos in the state, with enhanced safety measures in place, began reopening May 26, including the Oneida Casino and the North Star Mohican Casino, according to published reports. Menominee Casino Resort opened May 27. The state Supreme Court overturned the state's stay-at-home order on May 13 and bars, restaurants and other businesses reopened that day.

LEGISLATURE: Residents voted April 7 in the presidential primary in Wisconsin after legal challenges that went to the state and U.S. Supreme Courts. Gov. Tony Evers had sought to delay the primary until June 9 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Polling sites were consolidated and altered to accommodate social distancing guidelines for the primary. Votes won't be counted until at least April 13.

The assembly has ended its session while the senate last convened on March 24.


CASINOS: Northern Arapaho Tribe closed its casinos indefinitely on March 16. The Eastern Shoshone Tribe also closed its casino.

LEGISLATURE: The legislative budget session ended March 12.

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