TRENTON — The New Jersey Legislature approved a bill to bring internet gambling to New Jersey today. The bill passed by a 68-5-1 vote in the Assembly, while the state Senate approved it by a 35-1 vote.
Senate President Steve Sweeney said that the bill will help bring jobs and much needed revenue to the state and will play a crucial role in the revitalization of Atlantic City.
Under the bill, any game that is authorized to be played in a casino could, with the approval of the Division of Gaming Enforcement, be offered through Internet gaming. People in New Jersey would be able to play, and people from out-of-state would be able to as well,
as long as it’s consistent with federal law.
“Online gaming can bring visitors back to Atlantic City and customers back to our casinos,” said state Sen. Ray Lesniak (D-Union), one of the primary advocates of the bill. ” An analysis by Wells Fargo Securities determined that Internet gaming would attract more visitors to the casinos, create more jobs and generate up to $1.5 billion in new revenue. Another study by Econsult says that New Jersey casinos would win back customers lost to competition from other states and that a new pool of customers would be drawn to Atlantic City. This will help restore financial stability and drive future growth.”
“I want to thank Senators Lesniak and Whelan for their tireless advocacy on Internet gaming. Their work will ensure that New Jersey remains ahead of the curve on this issue. It will also help bring jobs to a state that has seen decades’ high unemployment and stagnant economic growth,” said Sweeney.
Nevada approved an internet gambling bill last week, and Delaware is also exploring internet gambling options.