A sports betting bill in New Jersey has now passed the Senate and Assembly, moving on to the governor’s desk.
Since New Jersey saw their sports betting case win last month after a ruling by the United States Supreme Court, giving every state in the nation access to passing sports betting legislation, lawmakers have been working hard to pass a bill that will allow the state to offer the activity. This week, the bill was able to gain approval via the Senate and Assembly, now moving on to the desk of the governor.
Senate and Assembly Approval
Yesterday afternoon, the two chambers of the state government decided to review the sports betting legislation and vote in approval of the measure. The bill within the Assembly passed overwhelmingly with a vote of 73 to 0. The legislators actually applauded after the vote took place. Just a few minutes later, the Senate passed the measure, again with full support, with a vote of 37 to 0.
The bill now sits on the desk of Governor Phil Murphy, who should sign the bill into law. However, it is unknown as to when the bill will be signed. Gaming operators in the state are ready to begin offer wagering options on sports, with several hoping to begin offering services this weekend.
Golden Nugget In
It was believed that one casino in the state would be out of luck if the sports betting bill was passed into law. According to the language of the bill, an operator of sports betting cannot offer such gaming options if the owner of the company has a vested interest of 10% or more within a sports team. Tillman Fertitta is the owner of the Golden Nugget Casino of Atlantic City and the Houston Rockets NBA team. During the time frame that the bill was being considered, Fertitta was having to decide if he would void his shot at offering sports wagers at the casino or if he would consider selling his stake in the NBA team.
It has now come to light that regulators are going to allow the casino to launch a sportsbook. With one stipulation. The Golden Nugget will not be allowed to offer any action on NBA games. Seems like a good deal and one that Fertitta is going to take.
The casino’s general manager, Tom Pohlman, commented on the recent decision by stating that the casino is grateful that legislature listened to their concerns and have included the venue in the legislation involving sports betting. Even though the casino cannot offer NBA action, they still have plenty of categories to take advantage of, including the NFL, MLB, college basketball and football, MMA and more.
Getting to Know the Bills
The Assembly bill, A 4111, and the Senate bill, S 2606, are set to see the state offer sports betting services. The bill in the Senate was modified to match the version in the Assembly but then changed altogether. For the bill to pass, both chambers had to approve the same language, which is what took place this week.
If the governor signs the bill into law, the land-based operators will be taxed 8.5%. Within a 30-day time frame of the bill being signed into law, online betting will be launched. The online industry will be taxed at a slightly higher rate of 13%. If signed, land-based operators would basically be ready to offer sports betting immediately. Monmouth Park is one example of an operator who is ready to go, as soon as the dotted line is signed.