Online Poker Made Legal in Nevada - 8 News NOW

Online Poker Made Legal in Nevada

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LAS VEGAS -- Poker players can now go online to gamble in Nevada and not have to worry about breaking any laws.

For the first time in U.S. history, the first legal hand of real money in online poker was dealt.

After a few quick steps on ultimatepoker.com, and as long as your computer is in Nevada and you're over 21, you can start to play Limit Texas Hold 'em and No Limit Texas Hold 'em, all in a virtual poker room.

"It's a first for America," Ultimate Gaming Chairman Tom Breitling said. "It's a first for Nevada. A lot of people talking about it, but we're actually doing it starting today."

Ultimate Gaming is a subsidiary of Station Casinos.

Ultimatepoker.com made history as the first company in the U.S. to offer legal and secure online poker for Nevadans and anyone visiting the state.

"There are 50 million poker players in the U.S.," Breitling said. "Now they can finally go online … and play the game they love with a trusted company."

Nevada legalized gambling in 1931.

Nevada has been the gold standard of regulation for decades and now that continues with online gaming, beginning today with online poker," Breitling said.

"For decades now, people have only had options with offshore operators--unlicensed, unregulated," Ultimate Gaming CEO Tobin Prior said.

After the feds made Nevada's gaming industry get out of online gaming in 2002, the state lost a decade of much-needed revenue.

Ultimatepoker.com could be vital for gaming's comeback.

Marc Falcone, chief financial officer for Fertitta Entertainment and Station Casinos, said Ultimate Gaming has more than 100 employees.

"We anticipate that will grow as the business grows more aggressively over the next 12 to 24 months," he said.

Internet poker could be a $100 million a year industry in Nevada, providing millions in tax revenue to the state.

Station Casinos said it believes this poker-only strategy right now is the best bet in the world of online gaming.

This is all under a 30-day trial with the Nevada Gaming Control Board, but the company expects it to be a hit.

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