Online gambling has flourished in New Jersey, United States, since its official introduction in 2013. The current law provides for a 10-year active duration, expiring in November 2023.
Earlier this month, the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee passed Bill S-3075, seeking to extend that for another decade. The bill’s sponsor Sen. Vince Polistina, R-Atlantic, said that legal online gambling had created several “good-paying jobs” and millions in tax revenue for The Garden State.
However, on Tuesday, July 26, 2023, the bill received a setback after legislators rescinded their decision to extend the period by another decade. Instead, they drastically reduced the duration to only 2 years.
But after facing protests from regulated casino operators, their political allies, and other business groups in southern New Jersey, the legislators altered the bill to introduce 5 more years of playing online casino games and betting on sports online. The legislators did not explain changing the bill, with top Democrats refusing to comment this week.
Don Guardian, a Republican Assemblyman and ex-mayor of Atlantic City, noted that everyone was trying to figure out the event.
The Chamber of Commerce of Southern New Jersey received the news with applause by saying:
“The business group is incredibly pleased that the General Assembly shifted away from a drastic and unexpected two-year internet gaming reauthorization through 2028. Although not the 10-year window the bill’s sponsor originally intended, this adjustment still allows for the sports betting industry to grow and thrive in New Jersey with a five-year security in its operating ability.”
Rumors among the Atlantic City casino and political circles say that this action may be a way to gain power over the city regarding the potentially increasing gambling taxes.
Currently, the state takes:
On Tuesday, Mark Giannantonio, president of the Resorts Casino and Casino Association of New Jersey, stated:
“The reauthorization of the internet gaming bill for 10 years is vital to the continued success of the gaming industry in New Jersey and the programs that are supported by the taxes collected.”
However, Giannantonio did not comment on the Senate’s decision to extend the law for five years instead of the expected 10.
Internet gambling has been a significant success story in New Jersey. In April 2023, internet gaming revenues surged by 16.3% to $158 million compared to the same time last year. In addition, the state received $47.6 million in taxes.