(Population 2,900,872 as of 2013)
It’s definitive — online gaming won’t be coming to Utah.
In 2008, State Representative Sheryl Allen introduced a resolution that any gambling legislation be left to the discretion of the state, which along with Hawaii was one of two states that had banned all forms of gambling. She had the right idea and set the stage for movement four years later.
In 2012, Utah Rep. Stephen Sandstrom introduced House Bill 108 Internet Gambling, which was intended to prevent online gaming in the state if and when the U.S. Congress legalized online gaming.
"We want to keep Utah free from the negative impacts of legalized gambling," said Sandstrom. "Without courageous leadership to block Internet gaming, Utah could see Indian casinos popping up statewide in just a few years."
That bill passed the state legislature and was signed into law two months later by Gov. Gary Herbert, making Utah the first state to preemptively opt out of iGaming.
"We weren't happy with the outcome," said the PPA’s Pappas. "We fought it. We worked with lobbyists there. Our state director got very involved. It's not an ideal outcome but, given Utah's history with gaming, it's not a surprising outcome."
Of all 50 states in the Union, Utah has the least chance of authorizing iGaming.