Online gambling on hold in Nevada

In America, a survey conducted by the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) has revealed that only 3.7 percent of people in the state have gambled online in the past five years.

The Nevada Gaming Control regulatory body commissioned the study as it looks at the possibility of sanctioning online gambling in the state and employed UNLV to gauge interest among residents.

“There is some ability or there is some argument that now there is an exemption to the Federal law against online gambling,” said Dennis Neilander, Chairman for Nevada Gaming Control.

According to Bo Bernhard, Director of UNLV’s Gambling Institute, 65.4 percent of people in Nevada had little interest in online gambling. “As it stands right now it appears to be a relatively low prevalence behaviour,” said Bernhard.

Gaming and technology companies have allegedly pressured regulators to license online gambling websites based in Nevada. Despite a Federal ban under the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) passed in 2006, individual states in the US are invested with powers of their own to establish gambling laws and exemptions to Federal law already exist for horseracing, state lotteries and fantasy sports.

“A number of these groups have said ‘why don’t you look at regulating it just for Nevada?’,” said Neilander.

Following the study, regulators stated that they would be taking a “wait and see” approach with the topic revisited should there be evidence of significant interest among Nevadans in online gambling.