U.S. Sports Betting News Roundup: Iowa, Virginia, South Dakota

Published February 11, 2021 by Elana K

U.S. Sports Betting News Roundup: Iowa, Virginia, South Dakota

Iowa hits record handle in January 2021, Virginia sports betting rolls out in time for Super Bowl, and South Dakota lawmakers are trying to fast-track the state's own sports betting initiative.

Sports betting is one of the fastest-growing industries in the United States. Here are some of this week’s highlights.


Iowa sports betting generated a record handle of $149.5 million in January 2021, narrowly skimming the $150 million mark. Industry officials expect to see even bigger numbers once the Super Bowl numbers are tallied and when NCAA March Madness kicks off next month.

January marks the first month that people located within Iowa’s borders could place bets online without having to register in-person at a land-based casino. Its record-setting revenue corresponds to the new regulations. In December 2020, the industry generated $104.8 million in handle, not a bad month but nowhere near the $150 million that January brought in.


Sports betting kicked off in Virginia just in time for the Super Bowl. The state had approved commercial sports betting in April 2020 but it took time for lawmakers to agree on regulations. Five operators launched in January 2021, and at least five more are expected to follow. The rules are fairly similar to those of other states, including a minimum age of 21 and the requirement to be located within state borders in order to place a bet.

South Dakota

In October 2020, South Dakota lawmakers ruled that the issue of sports betting would appear on the state’s fall ballot under Amendment B. The question was then put to the voters, who overwhelmingly approved legalizing sports betting. Officials now need to agree on the details: tax rates, types of accepted bets, mobile access, and more.

Early this month, the Senate State Affairs Committee heard sports betting legislation testimony to allow in-person and mobile betting in land-based casinos in Deadwood. At the same time, another bill was introduced that would allow mobile wagering anywhere within state borders. While lawmakers need to come to an agreement on where betting can take place, the wheels are in motion to get sports betting rolled out.







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