Christie Conditionally Vetoes Internet Gambling Bill
By Phil Gregory, WBGO News
Trenton. February 7, 2013
New Jersey is on its way to becoming one of the first states to legalize Internet wagering on casino games.
Sponsors of the bill permitting online wagers say they’re confident the legislature will act by the end of the month to comply with the terms Governor Chris Christie listed when he conditionally vetoed the measure.
Senator Jim Whelan says a ten-year limit on that wagering that Christie wants is not troublesome.
“I can’t conceive that ten years from now the Legislature is going to say we don’t need this money that’s been coming in from Internet. So I think the reality is investors are going to be confident.”
Senator Ray Lesniak says the governor’s call to raise the tax rate on casinos’ online winnings is also not a problem.
“That will not deter investors from making the million of dollars in investments that will be necessary for both the hardware and software to get these games going. It’s still very profitable.”
Supporters say Internet wagering will be a lifeline for Atlantic City casinos.
Senator Whelan says the Atlantic Club casino is in danger of closing without it.
“They have a buyer Poker Stars that is an Internet company. Without this bill they don’t buy and without a new purchase in there it’s very unlikely Atlantic Club would have been able to survive. So right off the bat we’ve saved 2,000 jobs. That’s a good thing.”
After going through the licensing procedure, Internet wagering in the state may be under way by the end of the year.