TRENTON – A resolution by Senator Jim Whelan urging the President and others at the federal level to oppose policies that could negatively impact the state’s internet gaming industry cleared the Senate today.
The resolution, SJR-102, urges President Donald Trump, members of President Trump’s administration, and Congress to oppose any measures and actions that would prohibit states to conduct Internet gaming. Recent measures in Congress, if pursued by the new Congress and supported by the President and his administration, would prohibit the transmission by wire communication of any bet or wager or of information assisting in the placement of any bet or wager, including Internet gaming.
“Atlantic City is seeing a rebound and I am asking the president and Congress to oppose any effort to ban internet gaming. In doing so, the President has a chance to take action in support of Atlantic City, the place that ultimately made him,” said Senator Whelan. “The numbers don’t lie, internet gaming is becoming a vital resource for the casino industry and we need to keep this momentum going. The announcement that Hard Rock is opening is further proof Atlantic City is on the up-swing and we cannot afford any backward movement right now.”
In his confirmation hearing as nominee for United States Attorney General, Senator Jeff Sessions indicated his desire to revisit the federal Justice Department ruling that currently allows the states to authorize Internet gaming. These measures and actions would invalidate New Jersey’s implementation of Internet gaming, which the State authorized in 2013 to be conducted by Atlantic City casinos in partnership with their Internet gaming affiliates and under strict regulation and control by the State’s Division of Gaming Enforcement. A federal prohibition against Internet gaming would directly and negatively impact New Jersey by dismantling the investments that the State and Atlantic City casinos have already made to implement and regulate Internet gaming, taking away the economic and employment opportunities already realized by the State and its residents, and foreclosing the future potential of Internet gaming to generate tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue, create high-tech software jobs, and foster valuable business ventures for Atlantic City casinos in this State.
A recent article on NJ.com highlighted the recent success the online gaming industry has had on Atlantic City. According to the report, online gambling brought in over $21 million in May, which kept pace with high revenues in the past few months.
The resolution cleared the full Senate 36-1 and cleared the Assembly 75-0-1 earlier this month.
The bill now goes to the governor.