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Back when we had in person conferences, one of the common comments was regarding the lack of female presenters and attendees. Entain is hoping to change that, having announced their partnership with the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), Women’s Innovation Igniter.The program is designed to help UNLV undergraduate and graduate women find a path to successful careers in the gambling and technology industries. Entain, who recently took on Jette Nygaard-Andersen as their CEO, is specifically looking to recruit talented women, and change the shape of the male-dominated field.The program will be led by Jan Jones Blackhurst, Chief Executive in Residence, International Gaming Institute and Robert Rippee, Ph.D., Executive Director, Innovation Hub. It’s expected to launch in August 2021 with 20 women in its first class, and will be held at the Harry Reid Research and Technology Park.Those first 20 women can expect a curriculum of hands-on experiences, practical learning, internships and mentoring from top executives. Entain will also keep an office on the premises to help the process along. “Entain is the ideal partner to help us bring this groundbreaking program to life,” said Jan Jones Blackhurst. “As a leader in online sports betting and gaming, Entain will help us showcase the myriad of opportunities available in these professional fields, further develop our curriculum, and help women see career pathways in a technology led industry where they are not always well-represented.”“We are honored to be a part of such an inspiring and pioneering program with UNLV,” said Jette Nygaard-Andersen. “Women can face many obstacles in getting traction in careers that are often or traditionally male dominated. This program will encourage women to aspire for careers they previously may not have considered, and it provides the hands-on experience they need to make the sports betting, gaming, and technology industries more inclusive.”“This industry has largely been male-dominated,” Martin Lycka, Entain’s senior vice president for American regulatory affairs, told the Las Vegas Review Journal. “Times are changing, but we believe that perhaps times are not changing quickly enough. … It’s critically important to support women in technology, women in gambling technology.”While there’s an obvious benefit to Entain in creating this program, there’s also a greater benefit to society. Women represented just 27% of workers in STEM-qualified industries, and only held 35.5% of gambling industry positions of manager-level or above, a recent UNLV study has shown.
Posted on: February 5, 2021, 02:00h.
Last updated on: February 5, 2021, 02:00h.
San Jose-based card room Casino M8trix is suing the city in a bid to have a ballot measure that was overwhelmingly approved by residents declared invalid, The Mercury News reports.
In November, 73 percent of San Jose voters approved Measure H, which proposed hiking taxes on the city’s two card rooms, Casino M8trix and Bay 101, in return for allowing them to increase their table-game capacity. Casino M8trix wanted to increase its current quota from 49 tables to 64.
It was a win-win situation for the city and the card rooms, until the state intervened and made it win-lose.
$1 Million Tax Headache
Two weeks before the election, California’s Bureau of Gambling Control wrote to city officials informing them it would be illegal for the card rooms to add more tables. Under the California Gambling Control Act, a city is prohibited from increasing a card room’s quota of tables by one quarter or more than it had been on January 1, 1996.
The city and the state are currently in disagreement about how many tables were in play in 1996.
Meanwhile, Casino M8trix wants to ensure that it does not become the collateral damage and is taking pre-emptive measures.
A lawsuit filed in the Santa Clara County Superior Court seeks to have the Measure H invalidated unless the tables are part of the deal. Otherwise, the card room could be on the hook for an extra $1 million annually with nothing to show for it.
The lawsuit argued there is “no evidence” that voters would have approved the tax hike – from 15 percent of gross gaming revenues to 16.5 percent – had it not been tied to the increase in tables.
“The unlawful provisions of Measure H are not severable from the lawful provisions,” the lawsuit states. “… the evidence of voter intent indicates that it was approved as a full and comprehensive amendment to the city’s gaming ordinance.”
Measure H was expected to generate $15 million for the city annually to fund emergency services, street repair, and to address homelessness.
San Jose city attorney Nora Frimann told The Mercury News that she believes Casino M8trix can have the additional tables, despite the state’s contrary position. She declined to comment further, other than to say the state was working to make it happen.
Casino M8trix has filed an application with the California Gambling Control Commission for the extra tables, which is pending. The card room’s lawyers said it had filed the lawsuit as a “preventative measure.”
Enter the Age of Magic in our new Betsoft slot Book of Darkness!Our newest slot by Betsoft will take our players into the age of the arcane where is magic is around every corner!This action-packed slot will take our players on an adventure to secure the Book of Darkness. If you enjoy stories and games that are full of myth and fantasy, then you will love this one. Everyone at some point in their life has thought about magic, some even attempt to see if it’s real. With this awesome game you don’t have to try, you will feel the magic with every spin!Book of Darkness is the latest 10x fixed-line video slot by Betsoft. This game offers magical features such as the Book of Darkness Wilds. There is so much more to this feature than meets the eye. Then there is the Clash for Power feature, once the right symbols align and let the clash begin. Finally, we have the Shadow Form feature to add some magic to the way you receive free spins!The first magical feature that you will love is the Book of Darkness Wild Symbol. This special symbol can substitute for any symbol except the Huntress and the Dark Wizard symbols. Align these symbols to trigger the Clash for Power feature! This symbol can also act as a scatter feature, awarding an instant payout and Scatter Free Spins!This next feature is what makes this game so exciting. The Clash for Power feature triggers when you align the Huntress or Dark Wizard symbol with the Book of Darkness symbol. You will then be given the option to choose your champion to duel and if your champion wins you will be rewarded with awesome prizes.Last but not least, we have the Shadow Form feature. This feature awards you with 10 free spins if your champion won the clash for power, but there is more: If you chose the Huntress you will also receive a 5x multiplier or if you chose the Dark Wizard you can increase the number of expanding symbols to 5!Get ready for the most exciting magical slot! This game will be here on the 15th of October!DOWNLOADPLAY NOW
Posted on: February 5, 2021, 12:59h.
Last updated on: February 5, 2021, 12:59h.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) probably will conform to last month’s appeals court decision on the Wire Act with only a little additional comment or measures, according to prominent gaming attorneys.
On Jan. 20, First Circuit judges in Boston sided with the state of New Hampshire, and rejected the DOJ’s 2018 Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) controversial opinion on the scope of the federal law.
The DOJ recently argued the Wire Act applied to all wagers and betting, not just sports bets. The opinion threatened to end online sports betting — and most other forms of internet gambling involving multiple states.
When asked about the recent ruling on New Hampshire Lottery Commission vs. Rosen, James Trusty, a former chief of the DOJ’s Organized Crime Section who now practices at Washington, DC-based Ifrah Law, explained it “completely negates the [DOJ’s] midnight memo trotted out in early 2019.
“It would be wise [for the DOJ] to simply withdraw the 2018 memo and return to the status quo from the last 10 years — simply to be totally clear on the department’s position.… It would be surprising and shortsighted for DOJ to suggest that they would have different rules in the other circuits while abandoning the poorly-reasoned 2018 memo,” Trusty told Casino.org.
Federal 2018 Opinion ‘Purchased’ by Sheldon Adelson
Robert Jarvis, a professor at Nova Southeastern University’s Shepard Broad College of Law, further told Casino.org, that President Joe Biden will not have the DOJ file an appeal to the Supreme Court in the New Hampshire case.
“Everyone knows that the 2018 OLC opinion was purchased by Sheldon Adelson and that its construction of the Wire Act made no sense,” Jarvis said. “This puts the case in a unique posture — normally, DOJ is defending a law passed by Congress. But here, it was defending its own handiwork, which it never believed in.”
Still, it remains possible that the DOJ will feel the need for some closure, says Jarvis, who is the co-author of Gaming Law and Gambling Law: Cases, Materials, and Problems (forthcoming Second Edition).
“If so, I would expect it to issue a one-page memorandum simply saying that it is reinstating the 2011 OLC opinion, which parallels the First Circuit’s decision,” Jarvis said.
“With Trump out of office and [Sheldon] Adelson dead, there’s no longer any political reason for folks like [Republican South Carolina Sen.] Lindsey Graham to push for an amendment/expansion of the Wire Act,” Jarvis said. Adelson, the Las Vegas Sands Corp. CEO who was also a strong opponent of online gaming, was a supporter of Trump and other Republicans.
In addition, A.G. Burnett, a former chair of the Nevada Gaming Control Board who now is a partner at Nevada’s McDonald Carano law firm, predicts there will not be prosecutions in the First Circuit’s jurisdiction based on the 2018 OLC opinion.
“It also seems likely there will be none elsewhere. This is because other circuit courts would likely give great deference to a sister court and not necessarily a DOJ opinion that was controversial when issued,” he told Casino.org.
“I think a formal revision of the 2018 memo by the DOJ to go back to the 2011 interpretation and move in line with the First Circuit’s guidance would be a nice end point, but ultimately may not be necessary,” Burnett adds.
DOJ May Quietly Abandon Wire Act Litigation
Also, Kate C. Lowenhar-Fisher, a Las Vegas-based attorney and chair of the gaming and hospitality practice group at Dickinson Wright, similarly said “I suspect the Biden DOJ will quietly abandon the case and withdraw the 2018 OLC memorandum.
“That would be much less murky than publishing some kind of no enforcement memorandum like President Obama did in connection with cannabis,” Lowenhar-Fisher told Casino.org.
“The status quo post-2011 would be restored, and perhaps we could put an end to legislating gambling via memoranda.”
Feds Should Not Pursue Gaming Cases if States Permit Activity
Overall, James Trusty suggests the “easiest fix” from the DOJ’s perspective, “is simply to clarify that federal prosecutors generally will not pursue gambling charges — Wire Act or other statutes — when the activity is licensed under state law.”
With the recent Wire Act appeals ruling in place, the DOJ is also “free to pursue off-shore sportsbooks operating illegally in the US, as well as any other criminal conduct that might be connected to otherwise lawful gaming, such as money laundering or organized criminal activity,” explained Trusty, who was presented the US Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award in 2011.
“This would take the emphasis on gambling prosecutions back to where it has always been intended to be — a tool to use against organized criminal activity, not a threat against today’s regulated, popular betting across the country,” Trusty said.
Online casinos are packed with thrilling games to choose from. Each with exciting themes, bonus features and jackpot rewards that separate them from one another.
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Storm Riders Chasing Wild Horses
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It’s About to go Down in the Wild West
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A Wild West Throwdown
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Stampede Storm feature
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Wild Bronco X
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It should have been a simple process in Arkansas. An idea for casino expansion is pitched, approved by legislators and voters and casino operators then present their projects in order to seek license approval. Everything seemed to be going well in Pope County until it was time to choose which operator would be given the license. That was the step where, last June, Arkansas Racing Commission (ARC) Commissioner Butch Rice screwed everything up, creating a serious amount of embarrassment that lingers today. Rice had seemed to be less than impartial when he sided with Gulfside Casino Partnership and its project, leading to backlash and a fight by the other candidate, the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, as well as his removal from involvement in the casino plans. The ordeal has continued and has now reached the Arkansas Supreme Court, which is giving its support to the Cherokee in the on-going battle. When members of the ARC gave their scores for the two casino proposals, it was blatantly obvious that Rice never seriously considered the Cherokee’s project, giving it a score so low that everyone knew something was fishy. That led to a complaint by the Cherokee, through its Cherokee Nation Business (CNB) arm, and the voting process was thrown out. An independent third party was brought in to make the decision, which didn’t sit well with Gulfside and the debacle continued. Gulfside tried to plead its case in front of an Arkansas court judge, but lost. That, in theory, would have allowed the independent review and selection process to move forward, but the judge in that hearing, Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Tim Fox, decided that the CNB, since it had no casino experience, wasn’t qualified to be considered as a possible candidate. That’s not the end of the dispute, either. Gulfside was brought to task because it, according to some, didn’t follow the rules. By law, any proposal submitted to county governments must show support by a local official. In Gulfside’s case, it had a letter of support from Pope County Judge Jim Ed Gibson, but this caused an issue because, by the time the two casino candidates were being considered last year, Gibson had already vacated his position. Gibson was replaced by Judge Ben Cross, who just happened to be a supporter of the CNB’s casino plans. The ARC threw out Gulfside’s application because it didn’t include an endorsement from an active official, and Gulfside found itself, once again, defending its position. Judge Fox found himself listening to company arguments once again and ruled that there was no mention in the legislation that required the proposal to carry an endorsement from an active official, allowing Gibson’s approval and Gulfside’s application to stand.As Gulfside was airing its complaints in front of the court bench last year, it had managed to keep the CNB from being involved. This didn’t sit too well with the Cherokee, as the tribe would be directly impacted by whatever decision was reached. The Arkansas Supreme Court unanimously ruled this week that Gulfside was wrong and that the CNB should have been included. If the whirlwind legal case isn’t already dizzy enough, it’s about to get worse. As a result of the high court’s decision, the CNB now has legal grounds to contest any decision tied to the Pope County casino license, including the decision last week by the ARC to move forward with Gulfside’s proposal. The soap opera drama is far from over.
A new payout structure for our monthly Unibet rake races and the latest race is under way already!
We brought you the news last week that Unibet were changing their VIP system and one of the side effects of that was our exclusive rake race would not continue in its current form. However since that announcement we are pleased to inform you that our monthly rake races will continue.
The payout structure for the new monthly race has been changed, because due to changes in local regulations, players whose Unibet account is registered in Sweden, Germany, Belgium and Denmark are currently excluded from the race. When local regulations change those players will be added again.
All activity in February so far will count towards this month’s race results. Check your progress here.
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This promotion is not available for Unibet players from Sweden, Germany, Denmark and Belgium due to local gambling regulations.
News broke this week that the Virginia Lottery Board approved the initial regulation on casino gaming in the state and provided an update on the recent launch of mobile sports betting.
The regulatory oversight of expanded gaming, which was assigned to the Board in the 2020 General Assembly session encompassed land-based casinos, as well as licensing the regulation of mobile sports wagering.
Lottery officials stated that the approved emergency regulations applied to land-based casinos in Bristol, Danville, Norfolk, and Portsmouth.
The casinos were endorsed by voters in the November 2020 elections. There is a fifth casino proposal in Richmond that is still pending.
As was reported in 2020, casino legislation required adoption of an initial regulatory framework by April 2021.
Refining regulations issued by Virginia Lottery is the next step. Officials said that this will provide an opportunity for public shakeholder participation.
The Virginia Lottery made a preliminary assessment of each city’s preferred casino partner, as part of the pre-certification process. The focus on the partners was their financial viability and experience in operating casinos.
The Lottery will look through the criminal history, as well as the financial reviews of designated gaming operators when the applications for casino operating licenses are submitted.
Kevin Hall, executive director of the Virginia Lottery said: “The Lottery’s role as regulator is based on its three-decade track record as a respected and trusted gaming authority in the Commonwealth,”
He added: “The Lottery’s professional staff and our Board will work to protect the public interest by ensuring the integrity of casino gaming through the strict enforcement of the law and our regulations.”
Mobile Sports Wagering
According to the Virginia Lottery, live, legal sports wagering launched on January 21 in the Commonwealth.Virginia sports betting went live in the beginning of the month thus adding to state’s gambling opportunities.
According to some officials, licensed operators include Betfair Interactive US LLC (d/b/a FanDuel) in conjunction with the Washington Football Team, Crown Virginia Gaming (Draft Kings), BetMGM, Portsmouth Gaming Holdings, Rivers Casino Portsmouth, and Caesars Virginia.
The state law requires all the operators to submit financial reports on total wagering activities by the 20th day of each month. This means that the first reports will show up by February 20.
Hall said: “In the seven months since sports betting was authorized by state law, the Virginia Lottery has crafted responsible regulations, accepted and reviewed applications, and awarded the first licenses to qualified operators,”
He added: “We have built a regulatory program that protects consumers and ensures the integrity of legal sports wagering in Virginia.”
Sports betting is expected to bring a significant profit for the Virginia Lottery, which is good news for the good cause the Lottery supports, meaning K-12 schools in the Commonwealth.
Source: “Virginia Lottery Board approves initial casino gaming regulations as sports betting moves forward”, WFXR TV, February 4, 2021
Gaming Innovation Group’s (GiG) first new partnership of the year will see its iGaming platform technologies power the launch of recently established online casino brand PlayStar Casino in the U.S. market.
Based on a revenue share model, the agreement between GiG and the virtual operator has a 4-year minimum duration with an expected launch in the 4th quarter of this year.
Commenting on the tie-up, Chief Executive Officer for GiG, Richard Brown, said…
“It is very exciting to be part of PlayStar’s inspiring and innovative plans for the expanding US digital gambling market. PlayStar has an extremely strong product vision backed by a very experienced industry team. This agreement further demonstrates and drives our ambition to be the platform partner of choice for operators in regulated markets. GiG is extremely proud to be supporting PlayStar as they establish themselves as a strong and innovative iGaming brand in the US and we are confident that it will be a successful partnership.”
Founded and operated by Joel Wikell and Adam Noble, PlayStar Casino announced earlier in the week its partnership with Ocean Casino Resort in New Jersey. Noble is the former Commercial Manager for Yggdrasil Gaming and former Head of Sales and Business Development – Platform Services for Play’n GO, while Founder and Chairman Wikell is the Founder of HexiGames, Readly, and Boss Media, and the Co-founder of Blinto AB.
Plans for NJ and beyond:
Co-founder and Executive Vice President for PlayStar Casino, Noble added…
“Gaming Innovation Group has earned a reputation for being a very formidable and trusted technology partner in Europe, so when we were assessing platforms for our market entry into New Jersey, we were very confident in selecting GiG as our platform partner. We are really excited to have them support our launch into New Jersey and also our future expansion into regulated states across the USA.”
“PlayStar Casino is setting out to offer an online casino experience with a difference that will stand out from the current offerings in the market. Our player experience focus, centred on a unique product offering, engaging frontend concept and personalisation will result in an immersive and entertaining experience for the player. We have big plans for New Jersey and other US states, and look forward to making our debut in the Garden State later this year.”
Sizzling sports betting market:
In related news, the northeastern U.S. state’s regulated sports betting market enjoyed its fifth consecutive record-breaking month in December after amassing aggregated revenues of $66.4 million courtesy of a monumental $996.3 million in combined handle.