Indiana Online Casino Bills Fail Yet Again
One month into 2022 and already, Indiana’s efforts to expand gambling have failed.
The House Public Policy Committee did not advance two bills introduced in Indianapolis aiming to legalize Indiana online casino games. The death of HB 1356 and HB 1337 closes the door on iGaming for now. However, there are ways the Senate could revive the issue later in the year.
According to Sen. Jon Ford, the political willpower to pass a bill was absent.
Ford continued by saying:
“With this being a short session for us and not a budget session, folks seem to want to wait. I just think it was really bad timing for us. We’ve got an election year, and we’re projected to have $5 billion in excess revenue. So it’s not a money play. All the timing is not right.”
Another chance wasted for Indiana online casino
Ford tried and failed to push Indiana online casino bills through the general assembly in 2020 and 2021.
Lawmakers were optimistic in 2022, even going as far as to enlist the help of iDEA Grow th, the Casino Association of Indiana, and UNLV to help educate the state.
The Indiana legislative session runs short on even years, thus making the passage of any bill very difficult. This year, the session ends on March 14.
Work began on both bills on Jan. 4; they were introduced in the House on Jan. 11 and needed to pass out of committee by Jan. 25. Each bill is then required to pass into the Senate chamber by Jan. 31, which they could not do.
What next for online casinos in Indiana
With Indiana coming up short, Illinois becomes the only state in the US with an active iGaming bill in 2022.
According to PlayIndiana, Ford will continue educating his colleagues about online casinos and prepare for the next legislative session.
“It’s always disappointing when you don’t get legislation moving forward, but I think we had a great year in terms of educating folks about iGaming,” Ford said. I think the industry is clearly going toward iGaming nationally, and as more states start talking about I think it will help us move forward next year.”