The state of Indiana is nearing the launch of sports gambling in the state in the next few months.
Indiana handed out 12 temporary licenses approval of operation. The Indiana Gaming Commission chose these venues on July 12: Ameristar Casino East Chicago, Boyd Gaming’s Belterra Casino Resort, Blue Chip Casino, Caesars Riverboat Casino, Harrah’s Hoosier Park, Horseshoe Hammond, Indiana Grand Racing & Casino, Blue Sky Casino’s French Lick Resort and the Indiana Gaming Company’s Hollywood Casino.
According to the Indiana Sports Wagering laws, these locations are allowed to provide gaming options while the Temporary Certificate of Authority is decided to be dispensed by the state regulator at the same time the applications for these licenses are being evaluated.
On top of the venues listed above three off-track betting facilities in the state have licenses in place: Harrah’s Hoosier Park’s Winner’s Circle OTBs in Indianapolis and New Haven, plus the Indiana Grand in Clarksville.
In-person bets at state casinos will be the first option allowed by the Indiana Gaming Commission with online and mobile betting to follow.
Draft regulations to put the House Enrolled Act 1015 through the gates is underway with a meeting coming Aug. 28. The legalization of sports betting in the state was passed in May when Gov. Eric Holcomb signed off on the bill.
According to a press release from the Indiana Gaming Commission official website, this is what is to come next.
“The IGC will thoughtfully develop an application and regulatory framework for sports wagering. By statute, the earliest date in which sports wagering can be offered (is) September 1, 2019 and is subject to regulatory approval. The IGC is committed to making this process transparent and to creating a strong regulatory environment that ensures the integrity of these activities in Indiana.”
That Sept. 1 date is a week prior to the Indianapolis Colts regular season opener against the Chargers in Los Angeles. However, there is no promise that bets will be available in Indiana for the first week of NFL action.
Betting on college and pro sports will be allowed at the in-state casinos, off-track betting facilities and racinos that are authorized to allow legal sports betting.
It should work much like a wager at a horse track. The customer will make a bet with the employee at a window or at an electronic kiosk of their preference. They’ll receive a ticket receipt in return and turn it in for the payout if they win.
The available sporting events will have to be displayed properly at these betting locations with the odds in clear sight. If a game is canceled, the customers are allowed to cash in for a full refund according to the regulations by the Indiana Gaming Commission.
According to the newspressnow.com media group, the Indiana Gaming Commission records “show that as of Friday (July 12) all five Region casinos are temporarily authorized to conduct sports wagering once state regulations are in place and the statutory ban is lifted Sept. 1.”
The Caesars regional president and the Hammond Horseshoe general manager Dan Nita says he is happy with the laws and regulations that Indiana has put in place.
"We've been encouraged by the draft regs," Nita told newspressnow.com. "Maintaining the integrity of the operation is first and foremost. But each property is a bit unique. So the ability to have some flexibility as to how the sportsbook is laid out, and where you place kiosks, and what kind of screens you have, I think those are more operational in nature and so we've been pleased with that."
The Hammond Horseshoe is adding a 5,300-square foot area dedicated to sports betting located on the casino floor, Nita said.
The best part of all this for Indiana is that the nearby Chicagoans will likely come over to make bets on sporting events of all kinds while Illinois still gets its casino and sports betting framework put in place.
FanDuel, DraftKings and FantasyDraft obtained permits in Indiana in June 2017 and have had those permits protracted for another year.
Indiana's path to sports betting has been swift and thorough, and The Hoosier State is building its sports betting scene at the perfect time, with the NFL nearing kickoff.