New Jersey Congressmen Frank Pallone, Jr. and Frank LoBiondo announced earlier this week that they have reintroduced legislation in the state to see sports betting become a legalized activity. Currently in the United States, placing sports wagers on single games is an illegal activity except in the state of Nevada. New Jersey has been trying for some time now to see the federal law change to have the right to offer sports betting services.
The Congressmen stated in a press release that the activity of sports betting is already taking place in New Jersey as well as across the nation. However, instead of the activity being overseen and providing revenues for the state as well as casinos, racetracks and businesses, the wagers are being placed via illegal means. Both LoBiondo and Pallone feel that the reintroduction of the gaming bills will level the playing field and give the citizens of their state the ability to share in the profits of sports betting.
LoBiondo pointed out that each year, competition from neighboring states as well as the proliferation of off-the-books wagering increase, the gaming operations of Atlantic City are at a disadvantage. The congressman believes that sports betting will be beneficial to the town and provide a unique opportunity of entertainment for patrons.
There are two different bills that have been reintroduced in the state. The first is the NJ BET Act. This measure was introduced by Pallone and would exempt the state of New Jersey from the prohibition set forth by the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992. LoBiondo is responsible for the Sports Gaming Opportunity Act which would allow any state in the nation to legalize sports betting within a four year time frame.
The state has tried in the past to see sports betting legalized but have been blocked in court numerous times. The Supreme Court is now set to decide if they will hear the challenge by New Jersey of the PASPA but will not do so until the US Solicitor General has sent in a brief as requested by the court. This process could take some time.