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Alaska Online Poker & Gambling Laws

Alaska PokerAlaska is among the most conservative states when it comes to gambling. They have yet to address the issue of online gaming, but land based gambling is frowned upon in almost all forms. Charity events that include gambling are even outlawed in the state of Alaska.

There have recently been efforts to legalize some forms of gambling in Alaska, but the voters have voted it down. In many cases there have not even been enough names on the petition to get the vote on the ballot. There are a few charitable bingo sites around Alaska, but for the most part the options for gambling in Alaska are slim. [1]

Can Players From Alaska Play Poker Online?

Yes! Players from Alaska are being accepted to play for real money on all poker sites on our homepage. Alaska has not specifically addressed the legality of online poker. It is not regulated, but thus far online poker rooms in Alaska have not been shut down like they have been in other states.

Is it Legal to Play Online Poker in Alaska?

The legality of playing online poker in Alaska is up in the air. The law can be interpreted several different ways, and there is currently no law the addresses gambling online specifically. The laws seem to target mainly the organizations that run the games, and we know that no individual has ever been charged for playing online poker in Alaska to date.

The laws concerning gambling in Alaska are pretty strict. Indian tribes have tried to change these laws in the past, but they have not had any luck to date. The majority of the citizens in Alaska do not want gambling in their state. A proposal to introduce regulated gambling facilities was voted down by a nearly 2 to 1 vote in 2008.

Poker has actually been legalized in Alaska, but the guidelines are very strict. Establishments must apply for a license which includes a fee of $25,000. If they are approved for a license then they have to pay a $10,000 fee each year to keep their license. This means very few establishments will even be able to afford to open with the massive fees involved. [2]

The fees are high to run a land based poker room, but it is encouraging for Alaskans. Hopefully, this will lead the way for online poker regulation for residents of Alaska. Below is a list of some important facts concerning online poker in the state of Alaska:

  • There is currently no regulation for online poker in the state of Alaska
  • Poker has been legalized in the state of Alaska.
  • Alaska is one of the 7 remaining states that don’t have a state lottery.
  • Currently there is no specific law in the state of Alaska that discusses playing poker online.

Alaska Gambling History

Alaska has a long history of shutting the doors on any form of gambling. Nonprofit bingo halls are permitted to operate, and they make the majority of their money from pull tabs. Poker has been legalized in Alaska, but very few people can afford the stringent fees to open a poker room.

Alaskans used to hold special charity events that were called Monte Carlo Nights. These were mock casinos set up to raise money for various charities. In the 1990s these were made illegal because the Alaskan government feared that allowing these events would lead to tribal lands building casinos.

Many people are upset about the decision to make Monte Carlo Nights illegal. These types of fundraisers brought in a lot of money for charities around Alaska. The people that attended these charity events and the people that held the events are very upset that they ended. They say that the claim by the government that Monte Carlo Nights will lead to tribal casinos is not a realistic claim. [3]

Legalized Gambling Options in Alaska

Along with bingo and poker you will find a few types of legal gambling in Alaska. I should note that although poker is legal in Alaska, there have not been any poker rooms opened as of yet. The fees may be too extreme for anyone to be able to open a poker room. Alaska does allow home poker games as long as no one is taking a rake on the game.

Most of the legalized gambling rights in Alaska are authorized to a single nonprofit organization. Some of the most popular gambling events in Alaska include the state fair’s Cabbage Guessing game and the Nenana Ice Classic. The Cabbage Guessing game is a guessing game involving vegetables. The Nenana Ice Classic is an annual lottery for guessing the minute of the river breakup on the Tanana River.

Will Alaska Legalize Online Gambling in the Future?

Alaska has made no move to legalize or criminalize online gambling thus far. It is uncertain whether they will opt out if there is a federal mandate to legalize online gaming. The fact that they have legalized poker in the state of Alaska is at least a step in the right direction, but Alaska has a long way to go before they could be considered a gaming friendly state. At this point, Alaska ranks among the least friendly states when it comes to land based gaming. We can only hope that the future of online gaming in Alaska will come with less opposition.

References:

  1. Jump up ^ Alaska Gambling Laws
  2. Jump up ^ The Legality of Online Poker in Alaska according to HB272
  3. Jump up ^ Alaska Gaming Commission
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