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Delaware delays online gambling vote; New Jersey mobile betting approved

TAGs: Delaware, New Jersey Online Gambling

delaware-delays-online-gambling-voteDelaware’s state Senate has delayed a vote on legislation that would have enabled state residents to enjoy online poker, slots and table games, as well as expanding the number of retail outlets at which three-game parlay sports betting wagers were offered. Originally scheduled for a Tuesday vote, supporters pulled the bill from the agenda due to the absence of a Senate Democrat, which the Associated Press suggested led to concerns that the bill wouldn’t have garnered enough votes to pass (although support for the measure was expected to be broad, mirroring the House, which passed the same legislation by a 29-8 margin earlier this month).

Perhaps more to the point, Gov. Jack Markell was reportedly also working to stave off efforts by the state’s harness racing industry to attach amendments to the bill designed to carve itself a slice of the revenue pie. The AP said officials would continue to work things out with the industry “over the coming months,” suggesting there might be no further movement on this bill before the legislature breaks for the summer. However, Senate President Pro Tem Anthony DeLuca told Delaware Online that he believed there were sufficient votes to pass the bill on Tuesday and vowed that there would definitely be enough guaranteed votes on hand Wednesday to push the measure through. Markell’s spokesman stated that the online gambling bill would be the first item on Wednesday’s agenda, but if the horseracing interests are successful in attaching an amendment, the bill would return to the House for another vote, causing further delay. Meanwhile, the current legislative session ends this Saturday. Tick, tick, tick…

In New Jersey, the state Assembly has unanimously approved legislation permitting Atlantic City casino patrons to wager via mobile devices away from the casino floor (at poolside, in restaurants and bars, etc.). Nevada casinos have already implemented similar mobile betting. New Jersey’s Senate approved the measure on May 31, leaving only Gov. Chris Christie’s signature to make things official. New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement will need to determine that the devices do not operate beyond casino grounds.

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