The US Virgin Islands (USVI) has recently declared that they will join US states, Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey, and allow legalized online gaming. In addition to declaring the legality of gaming on their Caribbean shores, there are notions that indicate the possibility of interstate gambling. According to acting chairwoman of the Casino Control Commission, Violet Ann Golden, there have been discussions with other states, including New Jersey, about allowing legal gaming state residents to place wagers through companies located in the USVI.
Back in 2001, there was a bill passed that would allow internet gaming on the islands. Those plans were quickly thwarted by the US Justice Department, similar to Nevada’s bill also back in 01’. But, after the new insurgence of legalized online gaming in the 3 US states, the USVI has declared legality, and is inviting gaming companies to set up shop on the islands.
Currently, the USVI legislation has authorized 2 master service providers to host the future licensed companies. USVI Host and St. Croix Internet Group LLC are the entities approved as the master service providers. USVI Host has been a licensed service provider since 2003, but due to the US government restraints was not able to provide their services until now, with the addition of St. Croix Internet Group LLC. The 2 master service providers are licensed for the next 10 years, with the option to renew for 2 additional 10-year terms.
With the addition of the Virgin Islands to the equation, it seems that the reality of nationwide gaming in the US is a definite possibility. We are also seeing the first real steps towards interstate gaming. These steps being taken with invitations to gaming companies to establish offices on the islands, could mean that the US Virgin Islands could be the Malta of United States legalized internet gaming.
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