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US – Illinois passes legislation scrapping in-person registration

By - 9 June 2020

llinois Governor J.B. Pritzker has suspended the in-person registration requirement for sports wagering during the state disaster proclamation, allowing people who want to create accounts to make bets online and via mobiles.

Governor Pritzker signed Executive Order 2020-41 that allows “Illinois residents may not be able to appear in-person at a casino” since there have been no definitive social-distancing guidelines established to re-open the casinos due to the COVID-19 pandemic and “will reopen only when safe to do so pursuant to the Restore Illinois plan.”

The Illinois Gaming Board said: “To prevent the further spread of COVID-19, Governor JB Pritzker signed an executive order temporarily removing the in-person sports wagering registration requirements for casinos, racetracks, and sports facilities. Casino gaming and horse racing have been suspended since March 16, 2020 to protect the health and safety of staff and patrons.

“Governor Pritzker’s executive order allows Illinois sports fans to temporarily place wagers from the safety of their own home, protecting a revenue source that is critical as the state begins to recover from the damaging financial impact of COVID-19,” said Marcus Fruchter, Administrator of the Illinois Gaming Board. “The Illinois Gaming Board looks forward to welcoming patrons back to casinos when it is safe to do so.”

Temporarily suspending the in-person registration requirement will allow fans to create online accounts and place wagers from the safety of their own homes while continuing to provide the state with revenue. Executive Order 2020-41 will remain in effect during the duration of the Gubernatorial Disaster Proclamation or the Illinois Gaming Board issues a competitively bid master sports wagering license. All licensees and temporary operating permit holders must continue to comply with the patron identification requirements.

Of the seven casinos and three racetracks that so far have applied for sports betting licenses, only Rivers and the downstate Argosy Casino Alton have been granted temporary operating permits by the Gaming Board, only allowing them to lay odds inside their now-shuttered properties.

Illinois casinos remain closed as a result of the governor’s shutdown order.

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