The Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) convened its last regular meeting for the year, marking the culmination of a 2023 that witnessed milestones in the state’s gaming landscape.

The year was characterized by the opening of four newly authorized casinos and two sportsbooks, licensing of more than 200 new video gaming establishments, issuing numerous other licenses and regulatory approvals, adopting significant new rules, and taking impactful enforcement and disciplinary actions.

IGB Administrator Marcus D. Fruchter lauded the accomplishments, stating: “We have achieved a lot this year to further strengthen and advance Illinois gaming, ensure a high level of integrity and ethics, safeguard public trust, and generate critical revenue for communities across our State.”

The Board’s meeting yielded several approvals and rule implementations aimed at facilitating the state’s gaming expansion. Notably, four rules were greenlit to aid the implementation of the newly enacted Public Act 103-0550.

This law eradicates an automatic licensure disqualification for individuals with a felony conviction, enabling them to seek non-gaming positions within Illinois casinos, such as roles in restaurants, maintenance, and housekeeping.

The rule permits the IGB to consider individual circumstances regarding past criminal convictions for non-gaming casino occupational license applicants.

Furthermore, the Board revealed the sanctioned language for responsible gaming signs mandatory for all licensed video gaming locations in Illinois, following Video Gaming Rule 1800.1750. This mandate parallels the requirement for responsible gaming signage in casinos and sportsbooks.

Previously, neither the 2009 Video Gaming Act nor the 2012 Video Gaming Rules necessitated such signage for video gaming locations. The approved signage language is accessible on the IGB website.

For video gaming, approvals encompassed licenses for 96 video gaming locations, alongside licenses for 27 technicians and terminal handlers. However, rejections were issued for a terminal operator applicant and one video gaming location applicant.

In the casino domain, approvals included 48 Level 2 and 94 Level 3 casino occupational licenses. Simultaneously, denials affected one casino supplier applicant and seven Level 2 and 3 casino occupational applicants.

Sports wagering saw the approval of 64 Level 2 sports wagering occupational licenses, demonstrating the broad spectrum of actions undertaken during the session.

The IGB also rendered decisions on several requests for hearings and resolved a Video Gaming Rule 320 Petition dispute through a Final Board Order.

The IGB’s forthcoming regular meeting is scheduled for February 8, 2024. Illinois, known for its gaming industry, boasts 15 casinos, 11 licensed sportsbooks, and over 8,500 licensed video gaming establishments.

The collective revenue from casino gambling, video gaming, and sports wagering contributed more than $1.4 billion in tax revenue to the state and local communities in the calendar year 2022.