Online Gambling Moving Forward in Washington, D.C.

June 30th, 2011  |  Published in Casino News

Over the past several weeks, many concerns have risen with regards to the initiative of the Washington, D.C. council to introduce regulated online gambling. One of the greatest concerns was regarding the conflict of interest from an independent councilor who was employed by a legal firm with their hand in online gambling. The other major issue was the silence that Congress has maintained on the passing of a gambling bill.

Implementing an Online Gambling System

Regardless of these two concerns, the D.C. Lottery has decided to proceed with plans for implementing an online system for those living in the District. In a report released by the Washington Times, six online casino games will initially be offered which include, blackjack, Texas Hold’em and bingo. At first, the games will be available in demonstration mode to allow players get acquainted with the system.

Initial Point System for Wagering

The games will feature a point system in lieu of monetary wagering. This will also give developers the chance to tweak the software. The real money games will then be available four to six weeks following the implementation of demonstration mode. The games will initially only be available at public terminals known as platinum sponsors. To be eligible, players must be at least 19 and log in from within the city limits.

Streamlining the Process

Furthermore, the typical online gambling industry prohibitions of creating more than a single account and giving others access to that account will apply. Supporters of the gaming have stated that it is extremely critical to get the technology right the first time. This includes preventing players from logging in from outside of Washington, D.C.

Adding Revenue to the City Budget

The legalization and implementation of the system will bring millions of dollars in revenue to the city. For many cities, this revenue could make a significant difference. Future additions include additional online poker games, random number games, electronic instant tickets and Victory at Sea, a Battleship-type online wagering game.

On June 29th, 2011, the Chairman of the Committee on Finance and Revenue will be involved in a hearing on future plans. This meeting is vital because the online gambling measure was added to the budget without public vetting. Therefore, the District’s CFO, Attorney General and other important parties will be briefed on how the system will work and why Washington is the first city to undertake the task.

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