With the stroke of the governor’s pen, Iowa sports betting emerged Monday from the cornfields.
Iowa sports betting basics
Here are the particulars of the new law:
- 6.75% tax rate on sports betting revenue
- $45,000 license fee, $10,000 renewal fee
- Mobile betting via intrastate means only (this appears targeted at Wire Act compliance)
- Up to two skins per licensee
- In-person registration for mobile apps until Jan. 1, 2021
- Ban on prop bets involving in-state college teams, but betting on college games generally is allowed.
- Regulated by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission
As far as sports betting bills go, this one is pretty well conceived. American Gaming Association executive Sara Slane published a statement in response to the news:
“The state of Iowa has set its legal sports betting market up for success with a reasonable tax rate, mobile wagering, strong consumer protections and provisions that put responsible gaming at the forefront. Through the leadership of champions like Iowa Gaming Association President and CEO Wes Ehrecke, Iowans will now have a safe alternative to the illegal market that has thrived in the Hawkeye State and across the country…”
As Slane subsequently noted, no US jurisdiction with legalized sports betting has an integrity fee in its law — including Iowa.
Partnerships already in place
The governor’s signature was never a sure thing, but the path to legalization was fairly smooth. Some casino operators were even optimistic enough to forge their IA sports betting alliances in advance.
Both DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook should have access to the market, too. FanDuel has a partnership with Boyd Gaming, while DraftKings recently teamed up with Caesars. Both casino companies own multiple properties in the state.
Iowa has 19 casinos that are eligible to offer sports betting, and the two-skin provision could put as many as 38 brands in the marketplace.