Renewed Pressure on Christie to Sign NJ Gambling Bill

New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie has received a letter signed by four of his state’s senators, urging him to sign into a law a new bill that will allow online gambling from Atlantic City casinos.

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Last week, the New Jersey Senate voted overwhelmingly in favor (33-3) of S1565 which will allow various forms of online gambling, including poker, to be formally authorized in the state.

The letter was signed by a number of top brass politicians in the NJ Senate, including State Senate President Bill Sweeney, Senator Jim Whelan, Senator Jeff van Drew and the co-sponsor of the bill, Ray Lesniak.

“The fact is, Atlantic City has the potential to become a hub of Internet gaming, which will create more jobs, more revenue for casinos and generate more funding for critical programs for senior citizens and residents with disabilities,” wrote the legislators.  “The short term benefits would be in the form of increased economic activity, increased jobs and increased tax revenues, at very little cost to the state. Over the long term, Internet gaming could change the landscape of the gaming industry in New Jersey.”

The letter also focused on the terrible destruction, both physically and economically, caused by Hurricane Sandy, and proposed that a change to the gambling legislation could only contribute positively to the disaster struck Atlantic City and the rest of the state.

“Given the fiscal conditions facing our casinos, especially in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, and the recent movement toward Internet gaming in states across the country, we cannot afford to wait any longer for implementation,” they wrote.

The legislators urged the governor to sign the bill into law and not veto it at the last minute as he did a similar bill last year. “New Jersey cannot afford to miss another opportunity to lead on this front,” they concluded.

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