After an October 2017 bill legalized Daily Fantasy in Pennsylvania, the industry worked quickly hard to bring a new product to market. A little over six months later, a regulated state-run Daily Fantasy site launched, along with a host of recognizable brands including Boom Fantasy, DraftKings and FanDuel. Other operators of Daily Fantasy in Pennsylvania include FantasyDraft, FastPick, Sports Hub, Yahoo Fantasy, Scout Fantasy Sports and Fantasy Football Players Championship.
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Pennsylvania is one of several east coast states that has made positive steps towards establishing a gambling industry in recent years, starting with the creation of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in 2004. The state’s gambling industry has thrived since.
The state continues to advance its online poker and casino gambling infrastructure, and is expected to join neighboring states Delaware and New Jersey with a full online casino market and to join those states as well as Nevada with online poker offerings - likely by 2019.
Meanwhile, Pennsylvania took its first legal sports bet at a casino in November 2018 and is ready to take its first online bet sometime early in 2019. It hasn't always been a smooth process to get the state's gambling market running, but the state is now positioned to have one of the most robust arrays of terrestrial and online offerings in the country.
With the current brick-and-mortar gambling framework generating an estimated $1.4 billion in taxes annually for the state, Pennsylvania officials hope to get a complimentary online market up and running. Sweeping new laws passed in October 2017 started paving the way for such a development. After a year of complex regulatory discussions, online betting finally has a timeframe for implementation. It will cap off a long and fascinating gambling history in the Keystone State.
The initial roll-out of online gambling services has continued through the end of 2018. High taxes have dissuaded potential online gaming partners, but the state still expects to have multiple offerings by the start of 2019. That will include a full lineup of Las-Vegas style casino games like slots, craps and blackjack.
Pennsylvania continues setting up its online poker network and has shown interest in joining the multi-state pooling agreement that would allow it to share players with Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware. These efforts will lead to a full-scale online poker market in the Keystone State, possibly before the end of 2018.
Pennsylvania had the foresight to incorporate sports betting into the amendment bill that passed in 2017, although lawmakers were perhaps not expecting it to come into effect so soon. With the Supreme Court overturning PASPA in 2018, the law was now already established to allow sports betting in Pennsylvania.
Like online gambling, there was no rush in the uptake from partners in large part due to a $10 million license fee and high taxes on winnings. However, after holding out for several months hoping to get the state to change its license fees, several casino companies relented and submitted bids - with the fees. With only limited interest, this could hurt possible revenue and gambling opportunities, but its still a big development. The state could take its first legal sports bet sometime in 2018 or early 2019.