In late February, Chris Christie officially signed into law a bill that legalized internet gambling in Atlantic City.
Initially the bill was vetoed by the Governor because of issues surrounding transparency and taxes. Lawmakers adjusted the text and the amended bill passed by an overwhelming majority in the legislature and earned Christie’s seal of approval.
Listed here are the basic principles of the bill:
– Casinos positioned in Atlantic City will have the ability to utilize for a license to provide online gambling. Only the twelve official Atlantic City casinos is going to be eligible for the license. No other organizations could offer internet gambling, and face stiff fines should they do. All facilities useful for the operation of internet gambling must certanly be located within city limits; only bets which are received by way of a server in Atlantic City is going to be legal.
– Players must certanly be “physically present” in New Jersey to position wagers. In the future, New Jersey may develop agreements with other states where internet gambling is legal to permit out-of-state gambling. The casino’s equipment must verify players’ locations before accepting wagers.
– Any games offered to play in the casinos can be played online. (For comparison, Nevada only allows poker.) Currently, sports betting won’t be protected by this bill, although their state of New Jersey is wanting to fight the federal statute barring the legalization of sports betting.
– The bill has all sorts of provisions to keep gambling addiction away, such as requiring the prominent display of the 1-800-GAMBLER hotline number, a method to set maximum bets and losses over a particular period of time, and tracking player losses to spot and limit users who may demonstrate addictive gambling behavior.
– Revenue from online gambling will carry a 15% tax. The Christie administration states that about $180 million in revenue for their state is going to be generated out of this tax, but some analysts think this number is seriously overestimated.
The state regulations, which the bill required the Division of Gaming Enforcement to create, were released on June 3, and are susceptible to a “public comment period” เว็บตรง until August 2 before being finalized. These rules include details such as how a casino acquires the appropriate licenses and procedures for maintaining network security on gambling sites.
So, will online gambling actually benefit their state?
Revenues from Atlantic City casinos have been on the decline for the past seven years, and online gambling could be what saves the failing casinos. Since 2006, casino revenue has dropped from $5.2 billion to around $3 billion. Online gambling is actually a $500 million to $1 billion industry in New Jersey, which may be enough to keep struggling casinos afloat and save jobs in Atlantic City. Further, although estimates of tax revenue are all over the map, there is possibility of online gambling to be a considerably valuable supply of money for the state. The casinos will also need to pay a tax to the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, which will provide further assist with struggling casinos in Atlantic City.
For the gamer, low overhead costs mean better prizes and more opportunities to play. Casinos can incent players with free “chips” which have minimal costs for them but give players more opportunities to play and win. The ease of gambling online allows players to play more with less travel.
One of the goals of the bill is supposedly to attract more individuals to go to the brick-and-mortar casinos, but it’s hard to state if online gambling will in truth lead to this outcome. You can speculate it may even cause people to visit the casinos less (However, this seems unlikely; the social element and the free drinks are lost in online gambling. Also, research shows that, at the very least with poker, internet gaming does not reduce casino gaming.) Advertising for the host casino is going to be allowed on the online gambling sites, which could possibly encourage people to go to the casino but is also annoying for players.
Online gambling could be seriously devastating for those who have gambling addictions, or even cause people to produce them, raising financial and moral concerns. Even with the preventative steps the bill requires, it will certainly be much harder to cut off compulsive gamblers if they can place bets anywhere with an internet connection.
Regardless, it will probably be a while ahead of the casinos can in fact kick off their online gambling offerings. The regulations must be finalized and casinos need to utilize for licensure and develop their gambling websites. This implies the casinos won’t be enjoying this new supply of revenue throughout the 2013 summer season, which may be Atlantic City’s toughest season ever following recovery from Hurricane Sandy.