Columbus, OH --- Illinois legislators reconvened in Springfield on Wednesday (Jan. 29) to hear Governor Pat Quinn’s State of the State address. They also passed legislation allowing Advance Deposit Wagering to continue.
According to the Illinois Harness Horsemen's Association website, the bill passed the Senate by a vote of 47-4, then went on to the House where it passed by a vote of 95-10. The governor signed the bill into law at 4 p.m. (CST).
Advance Deposit Wagering allows racing fans to bet on horse races online and is not a new law. ADW has been legal in Illinois since 2009 but was due to sunset on Jan. 31.
A percentage of ADW wagers fund the Illinois Racing Board, which regulates horse racing. Without ADW funds the IRB could not sufficiently carry out their responsibilities. Consequently, harness racing could have seen up to a 95 percent reduction in racing dates, going from racing 251 days in 2013 to just 13 days in 2014.