US States Start Gradual Reopening of Land-Based Casinos


Published by Dani Wilson on June 12, 2020 in Industry News

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The big reopening

Spring is generally considered a booming time for the casinos within the US thanks to weekend getaways, warmer weather and spring break.

Unfortunately, the Coronavirus put a halt to all operations in 2020 resulting in many closing their doors. The good news is that these casinos are ready to start back up again with Arizona casinos taking the lead. The casinos in this state started with partial openings in May.

From there, more states have started changing the social distancing rules making an effort to reopen casinos. Louisiana is the first major gambling market that has announced reintegration plans. Their operations started up again by the 18th of May 2020. California followed with Viejas Casino & Resort going back online the very same day. Arkansas was also among the many states who received authorization to reopen casinos and early in June, Florida and another group of states joined the ranks.

In Arizona three of the four casinos are open, namely Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, Wild Horse Pass and Lone Butte. Arkansas residents can head to Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort, Southland Casino and Saracen Casino Resort for gaming entertainment. In California, there are 16 casinos currently open and operational including Sycuan Casino Resort and Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sacramento.

Iowa has 18 open casinos, Michigan 10 and Mississippi 26 casinos of which the latter are evaluated on a daily basis.

More states including Nevada, Montana, New Jersey and Las Vegas have joined in and opened a few of their land-based establishments. All casinos have been opened after careful consideration, with the proper authorization and with strict health policies and regulations in place. The casinos are monitored daily to check for any further Corona cases.

Regulations include a limit on the amount of people allowed to enter casino areas with most entertainment sections still closed within the casinos.

Online gambling in Michigan

Besides the great news of being able to visit land-based casinos again the state of Michigan is also considering legalising online gambling. The original plan was to launch the legal iGaming market in 2021 but due to the outbreak and emergency rules, the market may be launched earlier this year.

According to the executive Director of the Michigan Gaming Control board, Richard Kalm, they have started the licensing process a little bit ahead of the rules. Kalm stated they’ve been doing this a long time and know some of the things they’re going to need. That being said, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has not yet signed off on emergency rules to expedite the launch of online gambling.

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