West Virginia Lottery Might Consider Joining MSIGA

West Virginia Lottery Might Consider Joining MSIGA

West Virgnia Lottery

The West Virginia Lottery has repeatedly thought about joining the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement, which now includes only Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware. 

Michigan has also agreed to join the Agreement; however, other steps are necessary before it can become a full member and realize its full potential.

West Virginia could join the union before Pennsylvania, as The Keystone State appears unwilling to open its exclusive market.

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Operators must take the initial step

Poker Industry PRO recently revealed that an unnamed West Virginia Lottery official stated that the state will consider joining the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA) if one of its operators expresses a desire to offer multi-state online poker. 

According to Poker Industry PRO’s study, West Virginia has historically been receptive to the concept of signing the Agreement at an opportune time, which appears to be when local operators take the initiative.

Each of West Virginia’s five casinos and horse racetracks can support up to three iGaming operations, which include internet casino gaming and sports betting. 

This means that any of the nine operators in West Virginia can inquire about adding online poker to the West Virginia Lottery. Rush Street Interactive (RSI) – the company behind the BetRivers brand – solidified its interest in poker with the acquisition of Run It Once (RIO), and the Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort is partnered with BetRivers and Caesars, so it’s a prime candidate to bring up the issue of online poker.

Greenbrier Resort’s Greenbrier Casino Club is home to the FanDuel Sportsbook and Golden Nugget. BetMGM and Caesars have synergies within the WSOP/888 US Network, for instance, due to their presence in New Jersey. FanDuel, which has close ties to PokerStars, already has a successful online casino in West Virginia, so online poker is imminent.

Some States Are Unwilling to Join MSIGA

Nonetheless, some governments are neither as cooperative nor as willing to sign the MSIGA compact or to implement its provisions. Such was the case with Pennsylvania, which was hesitant to do so despite the state’s established poker business. 

Some of the apprehensions about joining MSIGA centered on sharing the player pool and connecting with players from other states. Considering how MSIGA is established and how poker is regulated, the rake is collected in-state, therefore there must be another reason for Pennsylvania’s resistance.

Michigan, on the other hand, has been relatively pleased about its entry into the compact and was willing to share online poker liquidity with the other member states. The pact did not include its other online casino games, unlike New Jersey and Delaware, whose agreements encompassed these verticals as well.

In any case, if the results of Michigan’s acceptance become obvious, this could push operators in West Virginia to act more decisively and take the first step, as it appears that’s what West Virginia needs from them at this time. 

And who knows, Pennsylvania might even be tempted to join afterward. Time will tell, and as the number of MSIGA member states grows, the interest of additional states may be piqued.

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About Lou De Aguila

Lou Aguila is a news and feature writer for Golden Casino News. For over a decade, Lou has published news and featured articles for some of the most reputable sports betting and online casino sites in the world, including BetNow.UK, VegasOdds, and BWin. Apart from being a hardcore live casino punter, he also covers sports stories in North American leagues from time to time.