A week ago, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) announced that it would be accepting applications for online gambling licenses from manufacturers and suppliers as from April 2. The board is acting as per the legislation to legalize online gambling in the state that was passed in the state back in October last year. Hopefully, if the pieces keep falling into place the way they are, this development is an indication that the state may finally have fully operational legal online poker offerings by the end of the year.
At the moment, manufacturers and suppliers along with their investors and key personnel are the only ones allowed to apply for the licenses as stipulated on the PGCB website when it begins accepting the applications at the beginning of April. It is still unclear when the board will allow online gambling operators to apply for operational licenses and this makes the timeline for when Pennsylvanian online poker will go live quite uncertain. In addition to the undefined application timeline, there will be more time required to vet the applicants and online gambling regulations have to be drafted before players can start indulging in the games.
Is It Going to Be Part of the Shared Player Pool?
When online poker and online gambling, in general, does finally go live in Pennsylvania, the state will join the US shared liquidity pool that begun with Delaware and Nevada. New Jersey later also joined the shared player pool in late 2017. The move by New Jersey was hailed as a game-changer since it enhanced cooperation between the states which in turn contributed to way better online player experience.
However, the process of joining the shared player pool will definitely have an effect on the period when online poker will go live in Pennsylvania. The process is a bit tangled up because of the need to have Pennsylvania’s online gaming servers housed in Atlantic City, New Jersey thanks to a restriction in New Jersey’s constitution.