TRENTON – A trailblazing bill to legalize sports betting in New Jersey covered the spread in the Senate today, approved 31-3. The bill was amended on the floor to remove wagering over internet or on smart phones.
The ‘no’ votes were cast by state Sens. Mike Doherty (R-23), of Washington Twp.; Gerry Cardinale (R-39), of Demarest; and Shirley Turner (D-15), of Lawrenceville. None of the lawmakers were immediately available to explain their votes.
Under S3113, sponsored by Sens. Raymond Lesniak (D-20), of Elizabeth, and Jeff Van Drew (D-1), of Cape May, the Casino Control Commission would grant licenses and the Division of Gaming Enforcement would regulate the operations.
College sporting events taking place in New Jersey or any sporting event involving a New Jersey college team regardless of the location would be excluded from wagering.
The gross revenue a casino takes in from sports wagering would be subject to the 8 percent casino gross revenue tax, whose proceeds go to programs for seniors and the disabled; the proceeds also would be subject to the investment alternative tax, in which 1.25 percent of gaming revenue goes to various economic development projects.
Sports wagering gross revenue realized by a racetrack also would be subject to an 8 percent tax to be used for programs for senior citizens and disabled residents, and also to an investment alternative tax identical to the one imposed on casinos.