As one of the smallest states in the U.S., Delaware gaming officials have discussed an interstate compact agreement with their counterparts in Nevada.
At a meeting of the Delaware Lottery Advisory Council, the state’s lottery director, Vernon Kirk, admitted that the two states have had talks centered on a partnership agreement that would increase player liquidity for online poker. Delaware is preparing for a late September launch of its online gambling regime and rumors had been circulating that online casino games would be offered first, with Internet poker taking a back seat for the time being.
The reason being that Delaware’s small population of about 900,000 would make it difficult to maintain a viable online poker scheme. Combining forces with the roughly 2.7 million found residing in Nevada would benefit both states, as Nevada may also struggle to show sustainability once other online poker sites begin launching.
Thus far, only UltimatePoker has gone live in the Silver State’s poker-only scheme and things seem to be humming along just fine. But when the likes of Caesars Interactive, South Point Poker, and Treaure Island roll out their online poker offerings later this year, the player pool will likely become extremely diluted.
Now that discussions regarding interstate compact agreements with Nevada have commenced, perhaps Delaware officials will decide to add online poker to the full slate of Internet casino games upon launching in a couple months. It is not known if both states can come to some sort of working agreement regarding an online poker compact by that time. However, the fact that the pair have broached the subject is definitely good news for players in both states.
The meeting at which Kirk revealed that an interstate partnership had been discussed was held so that Delaware gaming honchos could look for solutions to the declining revenues currently being experienced at its three brick and mortar casinos, the Washington post reported. Much of the blame was pointed at Maryland and its Maryland Live! casino. As Delaware’s neighbor, the relatively new casino in Maryland is apparently gaining customers who previously flocked to Delaware’s land-based gaming establishments.
One solution is expected to be the added revenue from Delaware’s online gambling launch. The joint bid of 888 Holdings, Scientific Games and Williams Interactive has been selected by lottery officials as the First State’s primary vendor. Secondary vendors will be chosen in due course as the state’s Internet gaming regulations become finalized following a comment period on the proposed regulations that is due to expire at the end of July.
New Jersey is preparing to roll out its online gambling offerings in late November. It is believed that discussions between the Garden State and both Nevada and Delaware regarding compact agreements have not taken place as of yet. But with a population of some 9 million, New Jersey would be a favorable addition to any interstate Internet poker regime.