By David Madden
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBS) — After five days of test runs, residents of New Jersey and visitors to the Garden State will be able to gamble online through web sites based at Atlantic City casinos.
Starting today, New Jersey joins only two other states — Delaware and Nevada — in offering Internet gambling within its borders.
Some observers suggest this could be as important to the Atlantic City gambling industry as the opening of the first casino “down the shore,” in 1978. That remains to be seen, but it certainly will be another revenue stream the industry needs as it seeks to reinvent itself.
But Internet gambling won’t be as easy as clicking on a link. Casino Control Commission chairman Matt Levinson says you’ll have to sign up with a casino, and there are other restrictions.
“If you’re not over 21, if you’re not within the state of New Jersey, if you are a problem gambler, I know and I have full faith in the Division of Gaming Enforcement to enforce that,” he says.
The casinos themselves will help the state with enforcement.
And you may find that certain credit or debit cards will not work, because the issuing banks won’t allow them to be used for Internet wagering.
David Rebuck, the state’s director of the Division of Gaming Enforcement, expects that will change with time. Until then, he says, “(Gamblers) will do it through alternative means, or they’ll find other banking institutions that will allow them to.”