Borgata starts a New chapter with first Sportsbook in Atlantic City
Owners of Borgata online casino NJ bets on PASPA repeal with $7 million sportsbook.
It seems as if Borgata is not the only gambling bigwig who seem to believe that PASPA’s days are numbered as William Hill recently announced that they will be expanding their already impressive Monmouth Park Facility.
First established in 1992, PASPA (Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act) makes the betting on sports results (including college level games) illegal in the United States. However, there are a handful of states where the act is not in effect.
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Both Borgata, owners of the wildly popular Borgata online casino, and William Hill, the famed London-based bookmaker, seem supremely confident that the Supreme Court of the United States will come down in favour of the state of New Jersey in their appeal against PASPA.
With Jay Rood, Vice President of Race and Sports of MGM, recently announcing at the Sports Betting USA Conference that they are also planning the construction and creation of a sportsbook at their Marina District resort, it seems as if all of the big players are getting all of their sports betting ducks in a row so that they are ready to open their doors the minute PASPA is no longer in effect.
Is the industry counting its chickens before they hatch?
If we were to look at the recent announcements by Borgata’s recent $7 million announcement, one would assume that the act being repealed is a sure thing. After all, surely the owners of Borgata casino online know a thing a two about responsible betting.
However, not everyone is as confident, with David Purdham, the gaming writer at ESPN, going on record to say that the odds of the Supreme Court finding in favour of New Jersey is at -110 (53%) and Gaming attorney Marc Edelman has even said that he “would not put money on anything, even if I legally could.”
The US Supreme is only set to hear oral arguments for both sides of the case on the 4th of December 2018. When we eventually get to this hearing, the focus will be on whether or not PASPA goes against the anti-commandeering doctrines of the 10th Amendment, which states that the federal government cannot require some states to enforce a regulation that other states are exempt from.
As things stand, PASPA is in place in 46 states and bans its residents from betting on the results of any college or professional sports games. There are many sportsbooks currently running in Delaware, Montana, Nevada and Oregon as PASPA exempt these states as they already had some sort of legal sports betting in place before the act came to be.
Will Sports Betting Ever Be Legal?
[UPDATE MAY 14th] As of May 14th, 2018, the nationwide ban on sportsbetting has been lifted. Online casinos in New Jersey, like Borgata Online should offer sports betting by the end of 2018.
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At the December hearing the Supreme Court will hear arguments for and against the repeal of PASPA, with New Jersey’s state lawyers presenting their case while the NCAA and the Big Four (which consists of the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB) defend their lawsuit, which is currently preventing horseracing tracks in New Jersey and Atlantic City casinos from opening and running books.
US Solicitor General, Noel Francisco, will also have a federal government representative present at the hearing. It will be interesting to see their official stance on the matter as Francisco was appointed by Donald Trump, a man famous for the many casinos that carry his name, yet Francisco advised the court to dismiss New Jersey’s appeal.
So, despite Borgata taking a $7 million chance, it seems that its still way to early to call it either way. Especially when you have highly regarded gaming writers and attorneys saying that it is far too close to call.
Watch this space for the latest on the PASPA act and the latest news on the gaming industry.