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New Jersey Senate committee passes online gambling legislation

4 April 2012

A senate committee in New Jersey voted Tuesday to allow Atlantic City casinos to offer online gambling services to New Jersey residents.

The bill approved by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee (SBA) permits all forms of gambling allowed in Atlantic City to be offered online, requires that all the equipment used to offer online gaming be housed in Atlantic City and sets a 10 percent tax on Internet gross gaming revenue.

Land-based gross gaming revenue is taxed at a rate of 8 percent.

Gov. Chris Christie vetoed similar legislation last year because it helped subsidize New Jersey's horse racing industry and didn't specifically address the issue of banning Internet cafes for the purpose of gambling. In addition, Christie declared that the expansion of gambling beyond Atlantic City required a voter referendum.

The bill approved this week addresses some of those issues. It provides no additional money for the horse racing industry and prohibits the marketing of online gaming by anyone other than the casinos offering it.

And by requiring the gaming equipment to be located in Atlantic City, bill sponsors Sen. Ray Lesniak and Sen. Jim Whelan hope Christie will no longer view online gambling as an expansion of gaming beyond Atlantic City.

The bill also contains language that will allow New Jersey to accept bets from places outside New Jersey if it is legal to do so.

Eleven of the 13 members of the SBA Committee voted to approve the online gaming bill. Sen. Paul Sarlo, the committee's chairman, abstained from the vote. Sarlo represents a district that includes East Rutherford, home of the Meadowlands Race Track.

Sen. Anthony Bucco did not vote on the measure.
New Jersey Senate committee passes online gambling legislation is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.
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Best of Vin Narayanan
Vin Narayanan

Vin Narayanan is the managing editor at Casino City. When he's not writing or editing stories, he likes to play Chinese Poker, Badugi, Razz and any other "non-traditional" poker game. He also thinks blackjack is his best game and loves game theory.

Before joining Casino City, Vin covered (not all at the same time) sports, politics and elections, wars, technology, celebrities and the Census for USATODAY.com, USA WEEKEND and CNN.

A proud graduate of Michigan State University, Vin can be found on most nights and weekends trying to find a way to watch the Spartans play football or basketball.

Vin Narayanan
Vin Narayanan is the managing editor at Casino City. When he's not writing or editing stories, he likes to play Chinese Poker, Badugi, Razz and any other "non-traditional" poker game. He also thinks blackjack is his best game and loves game theory.

Before joining Casino City, Vin covered (not all at the same time) sports, politics and elections, wars, technology, celebrities and the Census for USATODAY.com, USA WEEKEND and CNN.

A proud graduate of Michigan State University, Vin can be found on most nights and weekends trying to find a way to watch the Spartans play football or basketball.