Iowa Casino Commission Takes Stance on Underage Gambling

  • The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission wants to raise underage gambling fines from a minimum of $1,000 to $3,000.
  • The Legislative Administrative Rules Review Committee must review and comment before the commission can adopt the change.
  • A $160,000 fine in Pennsylvania for underage gambling could be something to help move this forward.

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission is looking to raise fines for casinos permitting underage gambling. This will be the first time since 1990 that this fee sees an increase.

Due to inflation and potential severity of fines, the new minimum could be $3,000. Currently $1,000, Commission Administrator, Brian Ohorilko has noted the “uptick.”

“We have seen a recent uptick in violations — not a significant uptick — but definitely more than what we have seen five or ten years ago.”

The gaming board has fined $1,000 over 160 times in the last five years. This includes about 80 violations for underage gambling at Iowa casinos.

States’ Stances And Infractions

Other states have taken the same stance. New York is launching a new training program for Lottery retailers. This training covers talking to those not expecting to show an ID and catching fake IDs.

Across the river, New Jersey’s Lottery finished their “Not 18 Yet? No Bet” campaign.

The focus makes sense, as gambling violations aren’t always pretty.

Recently, Mount Airy Casino in Pennsylvania received a fine of $160,000. The fine came for allowing an 11 year old to gamble at 10 slots and cash vouchers. The parents were present but didn’t always have supervision.

Other infractions included two 13-year olds playing slots with their mom. An 18-year old hit two slots as well.

Iowa has taken notice and wants to move forward with the times. The potential increase in gambling fine amounts must undergo public comments.

Then, a committee on rules will give feedback. At the end, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission will adopt the rule.