California's Pala Indians are the first tribe to offer internet gambling in New Jersey.
Known as the Pala Band of Mission Indians, the tribe launched their website PalaCasino.com earlier today and began serving a limited number of New Jerseyans.
The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement is expected to make it official Monday, at which point up to 90 casino games will be offered. Palapoker.com is slated for release in Q1 2015.
How does internet gambling in New Jersey work?
Players must be 21 years of age or older to use Pala casino and physically located in the state of New Jersey. The terms and conditions read harshly, so players are advised not to test their luck through VPNs or any trickery, as internet casinos located in NJ are playing by the state's set of rules, and industry standard as online bettors have come to know it is subject to change.
The terms and conditions list the following: "It is a Federal offense for person(s) physically located outside of New Jersey to engage in internet or mobile wagering through a New Jersey casino."
Sportsbook Review reported in February of 2013 that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed bill A2578 legalizing internet gambling. SBR has interviewed State Senator Raymond Lesniak multiple times on internet gambling and sports betting in the Garden State. Most recently, Lesniak took the state's casino marketing executives to task for failing to properly monetize internet betting.
According to a report by NorthJersey.com, internet gambling revenue has brought in approximately one tenth of the $1 billion Christie, Lesniak, and other state officials hoped for in its first year.
What about sports betting in New Jersey?
New Jersey is also feverishly pursuing sports betting in its backyard, despite massive opposition from the professional sports leagues in the US, the NCAA, and the Justice Department. A new setback came three weeks ago when US District Judge Michael Shipp granted a temporary restraining order to the sports leagues to keep racetrack Monmouth Park from accepting sports bets on October 26.
ESPN reported that Monmouth Park had dedicated 45 days converting its sports bar and restaurant into a sportsbook. A number of employees were hired and a regulation committee named the Independent Sports Association was formed. Monmouth Park was hopeful for thousands of bettors to attend their racetrack to celebrate legal sports betting. Lesniak himself told SBR that he'd be the first in-line to place a wager on the "New York Football Giants to win the Super Bowl".
New Jerseyans have been clear all along, voting to approve a sports betting referendum in 2011. Sportsbook Review reported on October 17 that Governor Christie signed assembly bill 3711 legalizing sports betting.
Judge Shipp will hear arguments from both the state and attorneys for the sporting leagues Thursday and decide if the temporary restraining order should stay in place. If the judge decides to convert the restraining order to a preliminary injunction, the case will likely move to the court of appeals and it could be at least six months before there is another significant legal update.
Existing federal statute the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 ("PASPA") outlaws sports betting nationwide with the exceptions of Nevada, Delaware, Oregon, and Montana.
Sportsbook Review will keep readers up to date on all the New Jersey internet gambling and sports betting news.