Online gambling has been in the works for Michigan for quite some time. Online sports betting and casino games will be offered in the state once the new industry launches. It was hopeful that the state would start before the end of the year, but delays kept getting in the way. Now it seems that lawmakers might move ahead and finish up what needs to be done for the industry to launch in December.
The Joint Committee on Administrative Rules has 10 members who will reportedly approve new regulations for the gaming industry in a meeting this week. Republican Senator Pete Lucido is the chairman of the committee who provided insight into an upcoming meeting.
If approved, the move would come almost a year after Governor Gretchen Whitmer approved online gambling in the state. With sports betting approved, land-based services began quickly, launching in the spring. However, mobile and online sports betting, casino, and poker games still remain in limbo.
The licensing process must be completed before online gambling can begin. Operators like Barstool and FanDuel are vying for sports betting licensing. The tribal casinos and commercial casinos in Detroit can apply for online gambling licensing a well.
Lucido pointed out that getting online gambling up and running is something that is long overdue. Other states have launched services and he feels that Michigan is losing opportunity costs. Casinos in Detroit have been closed due to the local restrictions involving the COVID-19 pandemic. With online gambling, the venues could stay in business and bring in new revenues.
If the approval is given this week, operators are hopeful they can launch before 2020 ends.
In Michigan, the licensing process has begun and some operators have already been approved. Earlier in November, AGS LLC was approved for online gaming licensing. GeoComply Solutions, Inc., was approved for online gaming as well. Incredible Technologies received approval for online sports betting.
It is unclear as to who Incredible Technologies or AGS will be working with as suppliers. GeoComply will provide the geolocation technology in the state to ensure that players are located within Michigan’s borders before allowing gaming to begin.
High 5 Games was also approved by the state Gaming Control Board, for a provisional license. Players in the state will be able to enjoy popular High 5 titles including Secrets of the Forest. High 5 has an agreement with GAN, a company that signed an agreement with the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians as well as Wynn Interactive.
Evolution Gaming is another company players can expect to see operating in Michigan. The brand signed with FanDuel and Wynn Resorts along with William Hill, PointsBet and BetMGM. Evolution will provide live dealer games to the operators and awaits approval by the Gaming Control Board in order to offer services.
For now, we will wait and see what this week’s meeting brings. Will lawmakers push things along and complete the process so operators can launch? In just a few days, we should know the answer!