The Republican Governor for Iowa, Kim Reynolds (pictured), reportedly put her signature to a piece of legislation on Monday that will see the state allow sportsbetting to be conducted online and via its collection of 19 land-based casinos.
According to a Tuesday report from the Omaha World-Herald newspaper, the move means that Iowa has become the second Midwestern state after Indiana to have legalized sports wagering although the first bets will likely not be to be placed until at least July.
The measure signed into law by the 59-year-old Governor will allow anyone in ‘The Hawkeye State’ over the age of 21 to place wagers on the outcomes of a wide range of collegiate, professional and international events including daily fantasy sports contests. It also hands regulatory control to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, which will now be tasked with formulating adequate rules, while requiring operators to hand over 6.75% of their sportsbetting hold in tax.
For those sportsbetting aficionados who live outside of Iowa, the legislation has moreover legalized the placing of wagers via mobile devices and apps so long as the punter is physically located within the state.
The Omaha World-Herald reported that Reynolds explained her decision to sign the legislation, which was passed by the Iowa House of Representatives last month via a 67-to-31 margin after earlier making it through the Iowa State Senate, so that the activity can be brought out into the open in order to be regulated and taxed in a responsible manner.
Reynolds’ decision came just one day before the one-year anniversary of the United States Supreme Court’s decision to invalidate the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA), which had until then largely limited sportsbetting to land-based casinos in Nevada. Since this momentous ruling, eight additional states have launched some form of sports wagering while Montana and Indiana have passed enabling legislation since the start of the year with Tennessee expected to follow suit soon.