Out-of-State Competition Builds Pressure for Meadowlands Casino

NJ Spotlight News | February 29, 2012
Sen. Paul Sarlo says a casino at the Meadowlands would keep gambling dollars in New Jersey instead of sending it to surrounding states.

Some members of government believe New Jersey is losing out on revenue from gambling by not having a casino at the Meadowlands. Democratic Sen. Paul Sarlo is one of the officials who believes a Meadowlands casino would help capture the profits from gamblers in the northern portion of the state who currently take their money to other states instead of Atlantic City. Sarlo sat down with NJToday Managing Editor Mike Schneider to discuss the issue.

Sarlo says competition is fierce for gambling dollars in the surrounding states including New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Delaware. He wants a casino in the Meadowlands to help compete with the surrounding states without hurting the gambling industry in Atlantic City. According to Sarlo, northern New Jersey residents are more likely to visit Pennsylvania or New York than Atlantic City.

“We’re going to lose more and more people to our surrounding states. There’s only a finite amount of gaming revenue in the state of New Jersey,” Sarlo said. “We need to capture it. Whether it’s Atlantic City or the Meadowlands, we need to capture it.”

Sarlo suggests that a casino at the Meadowlands would make sense since it has a stadium and a train station in addition to a new racetrack. He also says the Meadowlands could help the gambling revenue for the state.

“If Atlantic City falters, we need to be prepared to build one in the Meadowlands,” Sarlo said.