New Jersey to Build Casinos Beyond Atlantic City Borders?

New Jersey lawmakers announced a new plan on Friday, which would see two new casinos built outside of Atlantic City. The current law permits land based casinos within the borders of AC and the decision to move beyond now lies in the hands of voters.

Atlantic City’s casino industry has suffered with the closure of four of its twelve casinos in recent years and despite the legalization of online gambling there is still a need to generate additional revenue. State revenue from the new casinos, planned for northern NJ, will help to recover some of the expected losses in AC and in the horse racing industry as well as tax relief for senior citizens and the disabled.

If it goes through, this will be the most significant change since the first casinos appeared in AC back in 1978.

Senate President Steve Sweeney said, "The question of gaming outside of Atlantic City has long been debated. Now is the time for the voters to decide. Expanding gambling to north Jersey is the best way to revitalize an industry that is important to the state's economy so that we can compete with neighboring states, generate the revenue needed to revive Atlantic City and contribute to economic growth."

Mayor of Atlantic City, Don Guardian recalled job losses that effected 8,000 people when the four AC casinos closed their doors.

"Whole families lost their only source of income after being 'Day One' employees at the casinos that they had invested their whole lives in," he said. "Auxiliary services that depended on the thriving casinos died a slow death as each casino went dark and no longer needed their services. Dentists, lawyers, teachers, bankers, real estate agents, restaurant owners, and just about everyone who made a living in Atlantic City and the surrounding areas felt the terrible effects of broken promises from expanded casino gambling and oversaturation of the market."

The Casino Association of New Jersey said, "The Atlantic City market finally started to stabilize in 2015, after years of cannibalization by casinos in neighboring states. The last thing this community needs is more competition from within our own state's borders."

Sweeney has called for a referendum in November 2016 seeking voter approval but the voting ballot will not reveal the specific location of either casino.

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    eberetta1

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    Give it to voters to decide, after we see four casinos have closed down. It is an obvious answer that opening other casinos will reduce revenues for the remaining casinos. I mean, like how big is New Jersey. You can almost throw a rock from one end to the other. Ask the voters if they would mind allowing people who are out of the state of New Jersey to gamble online instead. This would increase the player pool, which is the only way to increase revenues.
  • Nirvana2

    nirvana

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    curious to see if this actually gets approved...
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    char33

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    I wish they could make their real online casino be available to others to play outside of atlantic city . like other states
  • Jade lcb

    jade

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    Wow, that's a surprise to me. They want to build more casinos, but outside Atlantic City. Even though four casinos have closed in just the last few years and probably due to what they themselves called "over saturation." Haven't these officials heard that old saying; "if you keep doing the same things, your going to get the same results ." In this story, New Jersey officials seem to be talking out of both sides of their mouth. They feel that "the Atlantic City market finally started to stabilize in 2015." Now, I think that was mostly credit of the new online gambling sites and if they continue to need additional revenue for whatever reason, shouldn't they expand on their recently successful business ventures, not another land casino, even if it is outside Atlantic City. They need to be doing two things and they need to be doing them simultaneously. First, they should get their existing land casinos to expand their businesses with the addition of online gambling as an extension of that land casino. Next, their congressmen and Senators should be advocating legislation for nationwide online gambling participation, so all residents, no matter what state they live in, can go online and gamble at CaesarsCasino.com or any other site and not limit it to only residents living in or physically visiting/vacationing in New Jersey. Now, I've said it, now you, New Jersey, you go do it. I'm waiting.......
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    OOPaloo

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    Atlantic City was a fine film with Burt Lancaster, which depicted the area as poverty stricken. I wonder how much the casinos changed that for the natives of Atlantic City as the film was made before the big casino boom there. It is a really good film. As to the issue of casinos in the northern part of the state, I guess the idea is to compete more with neighboring states than with AC casinos although that NJ casino association begs to differ. Tax relief for the elderly and disabled...hard to argue against that, I say.

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