Internet wagering bill introduced

TRENTON – Sen. Ray Lesniak, (D-20), Elizabeth, is again trying to win approval for  internet wagering at Atlantic City casinos.

When his earlier attempt drew a gubernatorial veto in March, he said the state left essentially $35 million in possible revenue on the table.

Lesniak this week introduced S3019, which among other things would permit internet betting of all games that can be played at a casino; provide that the equipment involved be in a restricted area of the casino inaccessible to the public; mandate that a bettor be physically present in the state; and the facility conducting the wagering must be able to verify that presence.

In terms of revenue to be generated by this proposal, Lesniak’s bill states that there will be an annual tax on internet wagering gross revenues of 10 percent that will be paid into the casino revenue fund.

The bill would authorize the Division of Gaming Enforcement to set up an Office of Internet Wagering to monitor the system, and it also would establish a licensing process that would allow a casino to obtain a permit good for one year that could be renewed.

In addition, there would be an annual fee for permit holders for the initial permit and for renewal to cover regulation costs. The fee for the initial permit would be $200,000, and the fee for renewal would be $100,000.

There also would be an annual fee of $100,000 to be allocated for programs to combat compulsive gambling.

As a condition of allowing internet gaming, casinos would contribute money to a fund to raise $20 million a year for three fiscal years to go toward the N.J. Racing Commission to support the horse racing industry. Internet wagering bill introduced