State regulators ordered Illinois video gambling terminals to shut off to stop the coronavirus from spreading. They will remain closed until the end of March. As a result, the state gambling industry came to a halt on Tuesday.
Most electronic gambling terminals are switched off due to Governor J.B. Pritzker’s order to stop operations of bars and restaurants in the state. With the new rule by the Gaming Board, all video gaming terminals will remain closed for two weeks.
The gambling regulator told sportsbook pay per head reporters that its actions were to protect the public health. Also, the Gaming Board said it would monitor how the COVID-19 outbreak will develop in the next couple of weeks.
The ban on video gambling machines took effect on March 16th and will be valid until the 30th. Also, the governor ordered ten casinos in the state to stop their operations on March 15th. That is the first time the gambling terminals stopped their services since they became legal eight years ago.
Since 2012, video gambling terminals have become more popular than casinos, according to sports betting software reports. They bring in more gambling revenue than the casinos in the state. In 2019, losses by local gamblers at video gambling machines were at $1.7 billion. On the other hand, losses at the casino were around $1.4 billion.
The local pay per head bookie industry is suffering due to the coronavirus outbreak. At present, only horse racing is available for locals to bet on through mobile devices and websites. Fairmont Park doesn’t accept visitors. Also, its off-track wagering lounge is off-limits for now. However, the track broadcasts races live, and players can bet online.
Also, the lottery is still available in the state. However, winners can’t claim their prizes at the Thompson Center, which is closed to the public. Claim centers in Rockford, Springfield, Fairview Heights, and Des Plaines are open.