New Jersey Considers Adding More Casinos

December 16, 2013

For a brief moment Thursday, a long-simmering fight over the prospects of expanding casino gambling outside Atlantic City re-emerged in the state Legislature.

As members of the Assembly gaming committee considered a resolution to create a commission to study the industry — and the idea of expanding gambling to Bergen County — one lawmaker made it clear how he felt.

“I just think we don’t need to be revisiting expanding gambling outside of Atlantic City,” Assemblyman John Amodeo (R-Atlantic) told his colleagues. “And as long as I’m breathing, I can’t support that.”

Despite his objection, the committee approved the resolution, 4-1, taking what supporters hope will be the first step toward figuring out gambling’s future in New Jersey.

New Jersey is nearly three years into Gov. Chris Christie’s five-year plan to revitalize Atlantic City and the casino industry, which has seen its once firm monopoly on East Coast gambling vanish. The casinos made about $3 billion from gaming last year, more than 40 percent less than its peak in 2006. This year has been no better.

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