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Illinois launches second phase of sports betting rules


The Illinois Gaming Board has released the phase two rules for sports betting, setting out the technical regulations and operating requirements for wagering in the state. 

The phase two rules cover every element required for licensees to launch sports betting in the state. These range from accounting measures and financial record requirements to authorized types of bets, internet wagering requirements and responsible gaming controls. 

While these have not yet been filed with the Secretary of State, and are therefore subject to non-substantive changes, they state that official league data must be made available on commercially reasonable terms, and via a licensed data provider.

Operators must provide voluntary limit-setting controls for customers, covering the type of wager placed, the frequency of activity, the ability to cap spending, and the option to completely exclude themselves from gambling. 

It confirms that betting on minor league or Illinois-based collegiate teams will be banned, including parlay bets and fantasy sports. 

While the exact list of authorised betting events are not included, master sports wagering licensees will be able to submit written requests to the Gaming Board to for permission to offer odds on an events.

The phase one rules, published in December 2019, set out the eligibility criteria for licenses, covering master wagering permits, management service, supplier, data supplier and occupational licences.

“Last June, the General Assembly passed and Governor Pritzker signed historic legislation significantly expanding casino/racino gaming, video gaming, and authorizing sports wagering in Illinois,” Illinois Gaming Board administrator Marcus Fruchter commented. 

He said the state had been working “in an orderly and transparent way” to enact gaming expansion signed into law by Governor J.B. Pritzker last year. The release of the phase two rules was a continuation of this “thoughtful and deliberate process” to allow wagering to be rolled out “expeditiously and ethically” across the state.

The package of laws signed by Pritzker will also allow for up to six new land-based casinos to be constructed in the state, including a facility in Chicago. It also paves the way for the launch of slot machines at racetracks and the O’Hare and Midway airports.

“We look forward to working with our industry partners to ensure that sports wagering in Illinois operates with high integrity in a manner that is compliant, accountable, profitable, and fun,” Fruchter said.

The publication of the phase two rules effectively clears the path towards the roll-out of sports betting in the state, he added.

“Once applications are submitted, vetted, and approved, an applicant may receive a temporary operating permit and could then begin accepting wagers as soon as they are ready to do so,” Fruchter explained. 

“The Gaming Board is committed to the establishment of an ethical, transparent, successful, and efficient sports wagering regulatory structure and the phase 2 rules are an important additional step in the establishment of that structure.”