New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has announced that gambling online will soon be an option for residents in New Jersey.
After the Governor conditionally vetoed the bill earlier this month, lawmakers were able to draft a bill that met Christie's standards.
Christie hopes that the internet gaming bill will revive Atlantic City's casinos and entertainment offerings by bringing added revenue to the resort.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Christie said, "This was a critical decision, and one that I did not make lightly. But with the proper regulatory framework and safeguards that I insisted on including in the bill, I am confident that we are offering a responsible yet exciting option that will make Atlantic City more competitive while also bringing financial benefits to New Jersey as a whole.
Many people NBC 40 spoke with were in favor of the newly signed bill. James Williams said, "I think it's great - the idea of casinos going on the internet. It beats traveling, you can stay home and still get money at home, you know? If you don't feel like coming out, if it's snowy, it's just a great idea." Porsche Townsend added, "To bring revenue to your city or state is always a good thing."
New Jersey assemblyman Chris Brown spoke in favor of the bill and how gaming revenue is essential to New Jersey. Brown said, "A healthy, strong, and thriving gaming industry means more jobs, more tax revenue, means more improvements, and it means we can help better the lives of everyone."
Patrons would set up online accounts with one or more Atlantic City casinos, which would use special software to verify a player's age. Once the program is operational, something that could take six months to a year, gamblers could play any game now offered in Atlantic City casinos, including electronic versions of slots and table games.
However, there are some who think giving people the option to gamble online will lead to an increase in the number of gambling addictions. Atlantic City tourist, Michael Schwab, said, "It's just too easy - it's too easy to lose your money. You know, you can get really addicted to it on the internet."
Gambling addiction was an issue that was not overlooked - as one of Christie's conditions when he vetoed the bill earlier this month was to add funds to treat gambling addiction.
Whatever your stance on the issue, if you live in New Jersey, you will soon have the option of winning big from the comfort of your couch.
There is no word on when residents will be able to begin placing bets online.