ALTOONA, Iowa- Dignitaries gathered at Prairie Meadows Race Track and Casino in Altoona gathered today (Thursday) to officially open a sports betting area within the casino, on this the first day of legalized sports betting in Iowa.
Gary Palmer is President and CEO of Prairie Meadows and says it's an opportunity for the state of Iowa to get more tax revenue. He says there's a lot of excitement about sports betting. He says they've had a lot of inquiries about it, so he says it'll be interesting to see the results.
Palmer says it's amazing to see how all the pieces came together in bringing legal sports betting to Iowa. He says he's hoping those who come to the facility to bet on sports will spillover into other parts of the casino.
Palmer says he expects betting on football games will be the most popular sports for bettors.
"You know, it's not as though people haven't been betting (on sports), they'e been betting, it's just they've been forced to do it in the black market, where there's no consumer protection, no tax revenue raised and no jobs really created," said Joe Asher of William Hill Sportsbook, the sports gambling company partnering with Prairie Meadows and other casinos in the state.