When people think about gambling, their thoughts usually turn to the bright lights of Las Vegas. This is still considered to be the home of gambling after all and it is the most famous gambling venue in the world.
Legislations and Gambling in New Jersey
Few people would put New Jersey into the same league as Las Vegas, when it comes to gambling attractions, but it is the home of Atlantic City.
A law passed in 1976 gives Atlantic City a monopoly on casino gambling in New Jersey. Most of the casinos can be found along the Boardwalk and Marina district of this famous town. In January 2012 the then Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie signed a legislation allowing sports betting in the state, following a voter referendum that was held in 2011.
This law allowed any of the states 12 casinos and 4 race tracks to allow gambling on professional and college sports. The National Collegiate Athletic Association, the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, the National Hockey League and Major League Baseball all blocked this move by filing a federal lawsuit against New Jersey.
United States District Court Judge Michael A Shipp upheld this in February 2013. It wasn’t until May 14th 2018 that this ban was overturned due to being considered unconstitutional. On the 11th of June 2018, sports betting got the green light in New Jersey. Eventually, Nevada’s sports betting monopoly was ended by this state.
Gambling – New Jersey vs Las Vegas
Despite all this political wrangling, New Jersey, in general, has the least strict gambling laws in the United States. In 2013 another law was passed allowing online gambling too.
With a more relaxed approach to gambling, compared to other states in American, it is hardly surprising that this has helped boost its popularity. Does this increase in gambling mean that New Jersey is becoming the New Las Vegas? Well, maybe not in the casino stakes.
Recently Atlantic City saw the loss of four casinos due to closures and this has affected the New Jersey economy greatly. However, when it comes to sports betting it is a different ball game altogether. New Jersey has surpassed Nevada on a number of occasions when it comes to sports betting revenue.
In May 2019 New Jersey became the first state ever, to surpass Nevada with legal bets revenue taken on sports. This was no one-month wonder either, as this pattern continued into the year. It is thought that the uptake and state support of mobile betting has helped with these statistics immensely.
If New Jersey is a threat to Las Vegas then Pennsylvania must also enter the equation. It has seen rapid growth in mobile betting uptake and has a larger population than New Jersey.
Whilst Las Vegas continues to be famous across the globe for its casino delights, New Jersey can be seen as the new Las Vegas for other forms of betting in revenue numbers alone.
However, will it become a number one tourist attraction for gamblers across the world? The answer at present is no.