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Jersey Senate Says Yes to Internet Gambling

New Jersey state bill S-490, which seeks to regulate online gambling (among other things) in the Garden State, won an important Senate vote today. If it can now win approval in the State Assembly, it goes to the governor to be signed into law.

And if that happens, New Jersey would be the first state to regulate online gambling — putting it in a solid position to become the United States’ eventual online gambling hub, offering a regulatory structure that could extend nationwide. That would likely mean a radical change in casino affiliate marketing, since state law will be designed to favor sites that are based in New Jersey — as opposed to Malta or the Isle of Man, for example.

That doesn’t mean that casino affiliate marketing would be any less profitable or more difficult to maintain, but it may mean an entirely different set of brands to promote, and a new tax on Internet poker affiliate marketing isn’t hard to imagine, either.

According to the bill, online gambling would be controlled by “sophisticated software”, which would “make sure only New Jersey residents or foreigners would be able to place bets,” said state senator (and big-time online gambling advocate) Ray Lesniak per

Lawmakers also added a series of amendments to the bills, one of which directly addresses Internet gambling legal issues.

That amendment enables a state gaming authority group to alter existing regulations “for a 270-day trial period,” a stipulation meant to specifically address the issue of legalizing online gambling, according to the Press of Atlantic City.

Much attention has been paid to the proposed bills in recent weeks, and the 29-5 voting results show the enthusiasm lawmakers have for the idea of regulated — and taxed — online gambling.

“Internet gaming is a growing industry, and some of it is suspicious. But it’s much better to let the sunlight stream in, and make sure the industry is properly regulated,” commented State Senator Jeff Van Drew.

Nathan Denny
November 22, 2010