Gambling in Pennsylvania

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Gambling in Pennsylvania includes casino gambling, the Pennsylvania Lottery, horse racing, Bingo, and small games of chance conducted by nonprofit organizations and taverns under limited circumstances. Although casinos gaming has only been legal for about a decade, Pennsylvania is second only to Nevada in commercial casino revenues.[1]

On October 26, 2017, the House passed a bill that will legalize online gambling.[2] Governor Tom Wolf signed that bill into law on October 30, 2017.[3]

Casino and Racino Gambling[edit]

Since its creation in 2004 Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board oversees all casinos in the state. Horse Racing was the first type of gambling to be legalized in Pennsylvania, having been legal since the passing of the Race Horse Industry Reform Act in 1959. The first race track to open after the passage of that act was Meadows Racetrack in 1963.[4]

In 2004, the Pennsylvania Race Horse Development and Gaming Act was passed which legalized slot machines at fourteen locations beginning in 2006. The act authorized licenses for seven horse track racing locations (or racinos), five standalone casinos, and two resort casinos.[5] All casinos can have up to 5,000 machines, except the resort licensees, which can have up to 600. The Act also mandated that two of the five stand-alone casinos be located in Philadelphia, one in Pittsburgh, and the remaining two at-large.

Casinos in Pennsylvania have been permitted to operate table games since July 2010. Stand-alone and racinos may have up to 250 table games, while resort casinos are limited to a maximum of 50 table games. Table games legislation increased the number of slots that resort casinos may have, from 500 to 600 machines.


The Pennsylvania Lottery has been available throughout the Commonwealth since 1972. In addition to regular drawings, the state also participates in Powerball (offered through the Multi-State Lottery Association) and Mega Millions games and sells scratchcard tickets.

Future Expansion[edit]

On October 26, 2017, the state legislature approved a bill that would allow casino gambling at truck stops, airports, and online. The bill was signed by Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf on October 30, 2017. The bill also would authorize licenses for ten new satellite casinos with a requirement that they be located at least 25 miles from an existing casinos. The satellite casino licenses allowing up to 750 slot machines and 30 table games would only be granted to existing owners of casinos in Pennsylvania. Municipalities also have the option to prohibit casinos within their borders.[6]

The passage of the October 30th gambling expansion bill made Pennsylvania the fourth state to legalize online gambling, joining Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware.[2][7]

Truck stops may operate up to five slot machines with counties having the option to prohibit gambling at truck stops. Casinos may make agreements to operate an interactive gambling parlor with an airport authority at any of Pennsylvania's international or regional airports. Pennsylvania will become the only state other than Nevada to offer gaming at airports.

The bill would make Pennsylvania the fourth to offer online gaming and the only state to offer both gaming and lottery tickets online. Finally casinos may offer sports betting pending a change in federal law or a possible Supreme Court ruling declaring the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 unconstitutional (the law is currently being challanged by the state of New Jersey). [6]

List of Casinos[edit]


Standalone casinos[edit]

Resort casinos[edit]

Off-track wagering[edit]

Racinos also operate betting facilities located off-site.

Mohegan Sun:

Philadelphia Park:

Penn National:

The Meadows:

Future Casinos[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Levy, Marc (Oct 26, 2017). "Major Gambling State Pennsylvania Poised for Big Expansion". Associated Press. Retrieved 28 October 2017. 
  2. ^ a b "Pennsylvania becomes fourth US state to OK online gambling". Retrieved 2017-11-03. 
  3. ^ "PA Officially Becomes Fourth State To Legalize Online Poker, Casinos". Online Poker Report. 2017-10-30. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  4. ^ "From Horse Racing To Possibly iGaming: The Timeline of Legal Gambling In Pennsylvania". PA Online Casino News. Retrieved 28 October 2017. 
  5. ^ "Pennsylvania governor signs bill to bring in 61,000 slot machines". Associated Press. July 5, 2004. Retrieved 28 October 2017. 
  6. ^ a b "Highlights of Pennsylvania's casino gambling expansion law". Associated Press. Oct 30, 2017. Retrieved 31 October 2017. 
  7. ^ "Pennsylvania Online Gambling FAQ & HB 649 Analysis". Online Gambling Sites. Retrieved 2017-11-07. 
  8. ^ "Philadelphia Stadium Complex casino can proceed, gaming board rules". NBC 10 Philadelphia. August 9, 2017. Retrieved 2017-08-22. 
  9. ^

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