Rod Boshart
Published: January 29 2014 | 1:06 pm - Updated: 29 March 2014 | 2:50 am in

Video game enthusiasts in Iowa would be able to compete in online or other tournaments that pay prizes or awards to participants under a bill offered in the Iowa House. Rep. Chris Hagenow, R-Windsor Heights, said he filed House 2072 on behalf of a constituent but he was uncertain of its chances of winning support in the Legislature this session. Hagenow’s measure would amend current Iowa law to recognize a video machine tournament game as a bona fide contest and allow the payment of awards to operators who win a contest. Under current law, only video machine golf tournament games using a trackball assembly are considered bona fide contests. “It’s a very narrow clarification of the law,” he said. Hagenow noted there are a number of online video game tournaments available for players to win prizes and awards, but the fine print lists a number of states – including Iowa -- where they are not allowed. “It does not allow for gambling or wagering or any of those kinds of things. We don’t want to go there at all,” he said. Hagenow said he is not a video-game player, but added: “The younger version of me spent all kinds of time in the local arcade.”


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