New Hampshire Becomes 5th State to Adopt Online Lottery
New Hampshire has become the fifth state to adopt a form of online lottery, continuing the process of cracking the iceberg of online gaming that has for many years been limited to Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware. Governor Chris Sununu last month signed the bill authorizing the change.
Other states that have an online lottery are Illinois (since 2012), Georgia (since 2012), Michigan (since 2014) and Kentucky (since 2016.)
Lottery Commission Executive Director Charlie McIntyre hopes to launch the online lottery by early next year. He told the Union Leader: “For us, it’s just an evolution of how we do business. We’re not really selling anything new. We’re just doing it in a different way.”
Pennsylvania may become the sixth state. The Keystone State’s legislature has included it as part of an omnibus gaming reform bill that the state’s political observers think will pass sometime this year.
Another state likely to consider online lottery sales is Massachusetts, whose state treasurer, who oversees the lottery, has been pushing for it for several years. The year 2018 is seen as the likely date for adoption. Supporters will likely point to the example of New Hampshire as a selling point.
West Virginia is also poised to join the group, which it could quickly do without legislative approval because of the way the lottery law is written.
The states that have adopted an online lottery have done so with strong safeguards for consumers.
Interestingly, online lottery seems to help rather than hurt the land based lottery. In a December 2016 report by Digital Gaming Group on the Michigan Online Lottery, it stated: “The Michigan Lottery’s success story should be a page in the book of every lottery looking to convince its stakeholders of the value, certainty and complementary nature of this new sales channel.”