Sport

New Jersey Looking Towards Sports Betting

 

New Jersey has long been viewed as a haven for gamblers, mainly due to presence of Atlantic City, which has been seen as a gaming hotspot for many years. However, it is now starting to be seen as the epicentre of the fight to legalise sports gambling within the USA. A state law was passed in 2012 allowing sports betting within it’s borders, but national laws that were passed have stopped this been able to take place. 

As of April 2018 New Jersey have spent a massive $7.2M dollars in the fight to legalise sports betting within the state borders. In order for this to happen the Federal 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) will have to be overturned or changed. This act, also is in place to define the legality of sports betting within the USA and has made sports betting illegal in almost the entire country, with the exception of a few states. 

The two states that have already come close previously to having laws passed that would legalise sports betting are Connecticut and Pennsylvania, should there be any changes or a revoke of the PAPSA. It is believed that if New Jersey are successful in this fight many other states are likely to follow. However if they lose it is probable that the status quo for sports betting in the USA will remain. 

Currently Nevada is the only state that sports betting is fully legal and the case to legalise it in New Jersey was initially brought to the Supreme Court in December 2017, the main argument been that the federal law violates the principles of state rights. A ruling is expected in the near future and could come as soon as this month. 

If the case is won it will mean that any casino or racetrack in New Jersey will be able to offer sports wagers. Even though New Jersey are currently one of only three states that offer online gambling with licenses granted to the likes of PartyCasino NJ and Borgata Casino. It is not believed that even if the case is won, the online sportsbooks will be as quick to roll out as the land based ones. 

New Jersey has demonstrated recently that financial returns from legalising gambling, in particular online gambling can be huge. Online casino gaming and poker has been available in the state since 2013 and after getting off to a slow start has generated massive figures, the latest ones released in 2017 showing revenues of $245m, resulting in a significant source of revenue for the state in the way of gaming taxes. 

This recent success is seen to be what is pushing that state to legalise sports betting, which should enable them to further increase the economic gains that can be realised through legalising gambling. Even though the legal battle is proving costly for New Jersey is is becoming widely regarded as something that will be worthwhile if they are able to gain a stake of the $150bn US sports betting market, which is just set to grow and grow.



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