Delaware and Nevada governors enter into Internet gaming agreement

 Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-Nevada) and Gov. Jack Markell (D-Delaware) sign the Internet gaming agreement in Wilmington. (Shana O'Malley/for NewsWorks)

Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-Nevada) and Gov. Jack Markell (D-Delaware) sign the Internet gaming agreement in Wilmington. (Shana O'Malley/for NewsWorks)

Delaware Governor Jack Markell (D-Delaware) welcomed Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval (R-Nevada) to the First State this afternoon to announce a new partnership between the two states.

As online gaming continues to be a hot topic among the casino industry, both governors officially decided to enter into a multi-state Internet gaming agreement, which will soon allow Internet poker players in Delaware and Nevada to play against each other.

“Delaware players will log onto the websites of one of our three casinos, while Nevada players will log into a Nevada website, offering online poker,” explained Gov. Markell. “Once logged in, these players will be able to sit at the same virtual poker table and they’ll compete for the same pot of winnings.”

For now, poker will be the only game offered to multi-state players; however the agreement allows states to add other games in the future.

The partnership comes just a few months after Delaware launched online gaming through the state’s three casinos.

The two governors anticipate that the multi-state agreement will boost gaming revenues which will be shared.

“Casinos in Delaware and licensed Internet poker operators in Nevada will be able to pull liquidity,” explained Markell. “That is to put the money wagered by Nevada and Delaware players into a common pot. Generally speaking, each state will receive a percentage of the rake from each poker hand that’s attributable to players in that state.”

While Delaware and Nevada are the first states to enter into the agreement, they expect more states will be added.

“The approach we’ve taken with this agreement will allow us to establish a working framework within which multiple states can collaborate productively to achieve much needed results for our citizens,” said Gov. Sandoval.

He added that they’ve talked to neighboring New Jersey about joining.

“We’d love to have New Jersey,” said Sandoval.

An Internet Gaming Association will be established through the agreement which will adopt rules and procedures as new games and new states are added.

Neither Markell nor Sandoval  have a time frame for when the multi-state gaming will begin, but said they are working to get it online as soon as possible.

The next step will be designing a new interface with their online gaming networks.

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