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Court Puts New Jersey Sports Betting on Hold

Nov 21, 2014
Dennis Drazin New Jersey  sportsbetting

Dennis Drazin is confident about NJ sports betting

A federal judge intervened to temporarily block New Jersey’s plans to allow sports betting at the state’s racetrack and casinos.

State lawmakers have been trying to find ways to bring sports betting to New Jersey for years, but it looks like all attempts are destined to fail. A few weeks ago, officials passed a bill allowing licensed casinos and racetracks to accept wagers.

After Governor Chris Christie signed the document into law and Monmouth Park said it was ready to start taking bets last Sunday, professional sports leagues challenged the decision in court, asking the judge to issue a temporary restraining order to prevent this from happening.

U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp decided to grant the request made by the National Football League, the National Collegiate Athletic Association and other sports groups, but did not rule on the merits of the issue yet. A full hearing will be scheduled in the future.

A spokesman for Christie emphasized that the restraining order is temporary and added: “We continue to have full confidence in the strength and appropriateness of our position as we move forward in the litigation.”

USA Today: Judge: New Jersey can’t launch sports betting

Latest gambling news announce that a federal judge decided not to allow casinos and racetracks in New Jersey to start taking sports bets. In his ruling late Friday, US District Court Judge Michael Shipp put in place a temporary restraining order to prevent state operators from offering such services last week.

Monmouth Park was planning on giving its bookmaking operations a test run on Sunday, when it would have accepted bets on NFL games, but the court said Governor Chris Christie can’t launch sports betting in the state for now.

Monmouth Park officials were expecting about 10,000 people to rush to the track this Sunday to bet on Jets-Bills, Eagles-Cardinals, as well as on other NFL games. The track was going to open as early as 7 am, in order to allow visitors to place wagers on the Lions-Falcons game played in London at 9:30 am E.T.

But the NFL and other American sports leagues have filed a complaint asking the judge to stop state operators from taking bets immediately, invoking a 1992 federal law restricting sports betting to Nevada, Delaware, Oregon, and Montana.

A final decision will be made only after a full hearing, but for now the judge has issued a restraining order stopping Monmouth Park from going ahead with its plans. Attorneys representing the racetrack have argued that the business won’t survive without this new source of revenue.

NESN: Judge Grants Leagues’ Request, Stops N.J. Sports Betting Temporarily

Following a request from four major professional sports leagues and the NCAA, a federal judge issued a restraining order preventing New Jersey operators from taking sports bets for now. The request was made by the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, Major League Baseball and the NCAA, who went to court over a new bill signed by Governor Chris Christie, allowing casinos and racetracks in the state to offer betting services.

Under current gambling laws, Nevada is the only state allowed to offer betting on individual games at local bookmakers. Delaware also offers multi-game parlay pools, requiring players to pick several games correctly before winning any money.

“More legal gambling leads to more total gambling, which in turns leads to an increased incentive to fix plaintiffs’ matches,” Shipp said in court last Friday, adding that sports betting in New Jersey “would engender the same ills” that lawmakers sought to combat when they came up with the 1992 federal law.

Attorneys representing the sports organizations have argued that the leagues would suffer irreparable harm if such offers were available in the state. The lawsuit will proceed and the court will schedule a full hearing, but Shipp said a temporary restraining order was necessary to make sure that the matter is properly debated in court first.

Wall Street Journal: Judge Blocks Bid to Legalize Sports Betting in New Jersey

A previous attempt to overturn the sports betting ban and allow New Jersey players to bet on sports failed, and officials are not sure what will happen next. For now, Nevada continues to remain the only state where sports betting is fully legal. Delaware has a few similar operations, but the state only offers multi-game parlay pools.

While Atlantic City casinos said they would wait for the judge’s decision before starting any bookmaking operations, Monmouth Park Racetrack had originally planned to begin sports betting this weekend. The venue’s plans were put on hold by the restraining order.

Dennis Drazin, the operator of Monmouth Park, wrote in a recent statement: “While we are disappointed not to be able to start this Sunday, we are confident that sports betting will be coming to New Jersey in the very near future.”

While preventing the racetrack from starting its new operations, Judge Shipp also requested the five plaintiffs to put up a $1.7 million bond, to cover New Jersey’s potential revenue losses should the state eventually win the argument. The judge also said the temporary restraining order only applies to sports scores at events run by the four leagues and the NCAA.

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Court Puts New Jersey Sports Betting on Hold

Oct 28, 2014
Judge Shipp issues a temporary restraining order on sports betting operations in New Jersey

Judge Shipp issues a temporary restraining order on sports betting operations in New Jersey

A federal judge intervened to temporarily block New Jersey’s plans to allow sports betting at the state’s racetrack and casinos.

State lawmakers have been trying to find ways to bring sports betting to New Jersey for years, but it looks like all attempts are destined to fail. A few weeks ago, officials passed a bill allowing licensed casinos and racetracks to accept wagers.

After Governor Chris Christie signed the document into law and Monmouth Park said it was ready to start taking bets last Sunday, professional sports leagues challenged the decision in court, asking the judge to issue a temporary restraining order to prevent this from happening.

U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp decided to grant the request made by the National Football League, the National Collegiate Athletic Association and other sports groups, but did not rule on the merits of the issue yet. A full hearing will be scheduled in the future.

A spokesman for Christie emphasized that the restraining order is temporary and added: “We continue to have full confidence in the strength and appropriateness of our position as we move forward in the litigation.”

USA Today: Judge: New Jersey can’t launch sports betting

Latest gambling news announce that a federal judge decided not to allow casinos and racetracks in New Jersey to start taking sports bets. In his ruling late Friday, US District Court Judge Michael Shipp put in place a temporary restraining order to prevent state operators from offering such services last week.

Monmouth Park was planning on giving its bookmaking operations a test run on Sunday, when it would have accepted bets on NFL games, but the court said Governor Chris Christie can’t launch sports betting in the state for now.

Monmouth Park officials were expecting about 10,000 people to rush to the track this Sunday to bet on Jets-Bills, Eagles-Cardinals, as well as on other NFL games. The track was going to open as early as 7 am, in order to allow visitors to place wagers on the Lions-Falcons game played in London at 9:30 am E.T.

But the NFL and other American sports leagues have filed a complaint asking the judge to stop state operators from taking bets immediately, invoking a 1992 federal law restricting sports betting to Nevada, Delaware, Oregon, and Montana.

A final decision will be made only after a full hearing, but for now the judge has issued a restraining order stopping Monmouth Park from going ahead with its plans. Attorneys representing the racetrack have argued that the business won’t survive without this new source of revenue.

NESN: Judge Grants Leagues’ Request, Stops N.J. Sports Betting Temporarily

Following a request from four major professional sports leagues and the NCAA, a federal judge issued a restraining order preventing New Jersey operators from taking sports bets for now. The request was made by the NFL, the NBA, the NHL, Major League Baseball and the NCAA, who went to court over a new bill signed by Governor Chris Christie, allowing casinos and racetracks in the state to offer betting services.

Under current gambling laws, Nevada is the only state allowed to offer betting on individual games at local bookmakers. Delaware also offers multi-game parlay pools, requiring players to pick several games correctly before winning any money.

“More legal gambling leads to more total gambling, which in turns leads to an increased incentive to fix plaintiffs’ matches,” Shipp said in court last Friday, adding that sports betting in New Jersey “would engender the same ills” that lawmakers sought to combat when they came up with the 1992 federal law.

Attorneys representing the sports organizations have argued that the leagues would suffer irreparable harm if such offers were available in the state. The lawsuit will proceed and the court will schedule a full hearing, but Shipp said a temporary restraining order was necessary to make sure that the matter is properly debated in court first.

Wall Street Journal: Judge Blocks Bid to Legalize Sports Betting in New Jersey

A previous attempt to overturn the sports betting ban and allow New Jersey players to bet on sports failed, and officials are not sure what will happen next. For now, Nevada continues to remain the only state where sports betting is fully legal. Delaware has a few similar operations, but the state only offers multi-game parlay pools.

While Atlantic City casinos said they would wait for the judge’s decision before starting any bookmaking operations, Monmouth Park Racetrack had originally planned to begin sports betting this weekend. The venue’s plans were put on hold by the restraining order.

Dennis Drazin, the operator of Monmouth Park, wrote in a recent statement: “While we are disappointed not to be able to start this Sunday, we are confident that sports betting will be coming to New Jersey in the very near future.”

While preventing the racetrack from starting its new operations, Judge Shipp also requested the five plaintiffs to put up a $1.7 million bond, to cover New Jersey’s potential revenue losses should the state eventually win the argument. The judge also said the temporary restraining order only applies to sports scores at events run by the four leagues and the NCAA.

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NJ Preparing for another Legal Battle over Sports Betting in the State

Oct 22, 2014
NJ professional sports leagues seeking a temporary injunction to stop local gambling venues from opening sportsbooks

NJ professional sports leagues against gambling venues opening sportsbooks

New Jersey residents might have to wait a while longer before they can place bets on sports and horse races in the state.

With Governor Chris Christie approving a new gambling bill and rumors of the Taj Mahal closing later in November, New Jersey continues to be at the centre of attention in the US. At the end of last week, state authorities gave casinos and racetracks the green light to start accepting bets, but professional sports leagues have challenged the decision in court.

Monmouth Park is prepared to start taking bets at the racetrack this Sunday, but punters might have to wait a while longer because the country’s four professional sports leagues and the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) have filed a lawsuit on Monday, seeking a temporary injunction to stop local gambling venues from opening sports books.

On the other hand, industry representatives argue that allowing sports betting in the state could help thousands of former Atlantic City casino employees find a new job.

NY Times: Sports Betting in New Jersey Is Challenged

For a while now, New Jersey has been trying to come up with ways to circumvent a 1992 federal law banning state regulators from handing out sports betting licenses. Last week, an important step has been taken in that direction after Governor Chris Christie signed the new gambling law partially repealing the statewide sports wagering ban. But then came the bad news: professional leagues are seeking an injunction from Judge Michael A. Shipp of Federal District Court.

New Jersey’s first sports book is schedules to have a soft opening this Sunday at Monmouth Park. The racetrack’s operators said they’re planning to have 10 tellers take bets, only on the National Football League for now, all by hand. Both the track’s managers and state leaders expect thousands of people lining up to place their bets on football Sundays.

Dennis Drazin, a legal adviser for Monmouth Park, told reporters: “As we speak, we are geared up to start taking bets.” Lawyers representing the NCAA, the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, the National Hockey League and the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball declined to make any comments at this point.

The challenge argues that New Jersey has tried this trick three years ago, when attempts to legalize gambling on amateur and professional sports failed. “Because this effort is no more lawful than New Jersey’s past ones, it, too, should be enjoined,” lawyers wrote in the complaint.

On the other hand, State Senator Raymond J. Lesniak said: “I have a hard time believing that a judge will determine that the leagues can prove they can be irreparably damaged by Monmouth racetrack’s taking bets, when people are betting every single day legally in Nevada,” adding that sports associations are looking to secure a monopoly.

USA Today: NFL, other leagues move to stop N.J. sports betting plan

In the complained filed earlier this week, the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB and the NCAA said New Jersey was “in clear and flagrant violation of federal law.” Attorneys representing the leagues are expected to ask the judge for a temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction, to prevent local businesses from taking bets.

According to track consultant Dennis Drazin, Monmouth Park is planning to take bets on sports scores as early as October 26, during the Jets-Bills game, as well as for other NFL match-ups scheduled for Sunday. The operator is likely to add a $100 bet limit for the first day. Records will initially be kept by hand, and the track expects 5,000 customers to rush to the bookies this Sunday.

“We won’t be able to have everything set up electronically for 3 or 4 weeks,” Drazin explained. “My own take on this is the people have been clamoring for this for so long that we want to introduce them to it even if you can’t do it full scale just yet.’”

Legal analysts said it’s hard to predict if all this will actually happen on Sunday.

“The leagues loaded up their complaint with buzzwords to paint a picture of immediate and irreparable harm to the plaintiffs if bets start being taken, and they’ve won injunctive relief in the past,” gaming attorney Christopher Soriano said.

According to Drazin, the track could earn as much as $1 billion per year from sports betting, giving the state’s gambling industry a much needed boost.

Philadelphia Business Journal: Hundreds file for unemployment after casino closures

Atlantic City saw its last wave of casino workers filing for unemployment at the beginning of September, following the closure of two casinos over Labor Day weekend. More than 5,000 employees lost their jobs in the process.

An assistance center was set up at the Atlantic City Convention Center, and officials from the state Department of Labor and union representatives from Local 54 of Unite-HERE were there to offer them help in filing for unemployment. They were also given information on how to sign up for health insurance.

“We’re working every day to create solutions,” Mayor Don Guardian told reporters. “As a city that cares about its residents first, we want you to know what steps we’re taking to assist in transitioning individuals losing jobs.”

Officials added that laid-off workers would be getting all the necessary training “to help ensure [they] have a smooth, quick transition to new employment.”

Job-training initiatives will be held at the Atlantic Cape Community College, aiming to train up to 1,200 employees every year. Officials plan to open a job placement center by October, assisting all Atlantic City residents.

Atlantic City started the year with 12 casinos, but their number has dropped to just eight by mid-September.

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Court Ruling to Decide the Fate of Sports Betting in New Jersey

Sep 23, 2014
Gambling operators in New Jersey await a court decision on betting on sports scores

Gambling operators in New Jersey await a court decision on betting on sports scores

Officials had plans to open a sports betting service at the New Jersey race tracks as soon as possible, but it looks like they need more time.

At the beginning of September, Governor Chris Christie’s administration took one more step to help New Jersey’s gambling industry grow, by issuing a directive that made it legal for casinos and racetracks to offer sports betting services.

But it looks like there are more hurdles to pass before New Jersey players can legally place wager on sports scores, as the decision was challenged by professional sports leagues. These are the same organizations which fought the state’s efforts to reverse the ban on sports betting, when the US Supreme Court declined to hear the case.

The governor said he did his research and found no trace of previous federal court rulings prohibiting casinos and horse racing tracks from offering sports betting. Now the topic has become a widely debated issue, with a federal ruling expected on October 6.

Miami Herald: New Jersey track extends date for sports betting

The management of the racetrack had plans to open the sportsbook in 45 days, or at least by the end of October. Dennis Drazin, a legal adviser to Monmouth Park, was even more optimistic, hoping to get things going on the first weekend after the directive was issued.

Now the racetrack announced it was taking its time with the big launch, giving the federal judge time to rule on the legality of the directive issued by the New Jersey administration. The court decision is expected to be issued on October 6.

Recent online gambling news wrote that Monmouth Park needs more time to set up phone lines and Internet connections for the operation, as well as to hire 111 new employees. The racetrack is planning on establishing its own private association to regulate sports betting, since the state hasn’t taken care of this. Other casinos or racetracks will be welcome to join the group.

While the legal adviser said he would start taking bets as soon as possible, a Meadowlands Racetrack spokeswoman for the said the establishment wasn’t planning on offering such services for now.

Houston Chronicle: Q&A: New Jersey’s sports gambling push

After Government Chris Christie issued an order this September, saying that racetracks and casinos won’t be prosecuted for taking wagers on sports event, legal issues are still waiting to be resolved before establishments actually start accepting bets. The Houston Chronicle offers answers to some of the most common questions surrounding the issue.

If you want to know why no one is offering sports betting yet, you should know that racetracks and casinos are still waiting for a federal judge to rule on the legality of the new directive. The New Jersey Legislature might also need to take further action before operators launch these services.

The professional sports leagues who sued Christie in 2012 to stop sports wagering in the state have not taken any legal action against the September 8 order yet, but they are probably also waiting for the judge to rule on the issue before proceeding.

Monmouth Park Racetrack officials have already indicated they’d be willing to take bets as soon as possible. The racetrack is even working with a sports betting firm, preparing a room to be used for the new service.

NJ.com: Quigley: Sports betting banned? Don’t bet on it

Good news for New Jersey players eager to put money on sports event. Governor Christie made sportsbooks legal in the state, and Monmouth Park promised to offer these services real soon. Some limitations might be imposed, such as betting on games played in state or being played by New Jersey colleges, but apart from that, sports wagering might get the green light through racetracks and casinos.

In 1992, when Congress passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, sports betting became illegal in all but four states. Nevada, Delaware, Oregon and Montana already permitted such wagering, so they were exempt from the rules. A recent poll showed New Jersey residents were two-to-one in favor, but until recently the activity has been illegal.

After four Atlantic City casinos closed this summer, reread an old court decision and concluded that as long as New Jersey did not officially “authorize” sports betting, the state would not get into any legal trouble. This is how the Governor decided he would issue an order saying that entities running sports betting activities would not be prosecuted.

The state treasury is bound to gain from ordinary corporate business taxes, while racetracks and casinos will benefit from an increased client base.

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