Introduction to New Jersey Slot Machine Casino Gambling
New Jersey slot machine casino gambling consists of casinos and pari-mutuel facilities, currently with all 7 casinos located in Atlantic City. New Jersey’s gambling laws are the most permissive in the U.S. Sports betting is an active issue, and not currently allowed, but with a Supreme Court legal case ruling expected in early 2018.
During their peak in 2006, when they were the only commercial casinos in the eastern U.S., Atlantic City casinos were an economic boon. Subsequent openings of many casinos and racinos throughout the eastern states, along with the Great Recession, has extremely reduced the profitability of Atlantic City casinos.
Due to a recent upturn in profitability, an additional Atlantic City casino is expected to open in late May 2018. Another two casinos being proposed in Meadowlands as well as Jersey City.
This post continues the weekly blog series “Slot Machine Casino Gambling, State-By-State“, a year-long online resource project dedicated to guiding slot machine gambling enthusiasts to success.
Relevant Legal Statutes on Gambling*
The legal age for gambling is 21. It is legal for a minor to go to a casino, but not gamble, drink alcoholic beverages, or remain on the gambling floor. The minimum legal age for other forms of gambling, such as pari-mutuel wagering and the lottery, is 18.
New Jersey voters legalized casino gambling in Atlantic City in 1976. The New Jersey Casino Control Act became a state law in 1977. The first casino in New Jersey, the Resorts International Casino, opened in Atlantic City in 1978.
Online gambling was approved, after several attempts, on 2013. Sports betting is not currently legal, but Christie v. NCAA is a legal case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. A court decision is expected in early 2018.
There are no tribal casinos within the state.
*The purpose of this section is to inform the public of state gambling laws and how the laws apply to various forms of gambling. This information is not intended to provide legal advice.
Slot Machine Private Ownership
It is legal to privately own a slot machine in New Jersey if it was manufactured before 1941.
State Gaming Commission
New Jersey has four state gaming commissions, including:
- The New Jersey Casino Control Commission regulates online gaming and Atlantic City casino gambling.
- The New Jersey Racing Commission regulates race betting.
- The Legalized Games of Chance Control Commission under the Division of Consumer Affairs administers bingo, raffles, and amusement games.
- New Jersey Lottery under the New Jersey Department of Treasury.
Slots enthusiasts should focus their attention on the New Jersey Casino Control Commission. As of 2011, the Commission’s task of regulating casinos is shared with the Division of Gaming Enforcement. The Commission is an independent agency while the Division is an arm of the New Jersey’s Attorney General’s Office.
The Division of Gaming Enforcement provides its state gaming regulations online, which is a 2639-page document. Much more study is required to fully understand the specifics provided on payout return requirements.
In general, however, New Jersey state gaming regulations require that all slot machines have a payout return of at least 83%.
At the beginning of 2014, there were 12 casinos in operation in Atlantic City. Four casinos closed by the end of 2014, with another closing in 2015. The remaining 7 casinos are steadily becoming more profitable due to having fewer local competitors. In fact, an eighth casino is expected to open in late May 2018.
The largest casino in New Jersey is Bally’s Atlantic City (http://www.ballysac.com), having 5,200 gaming machines and 230 table games.
The second largest is Hard Rock Casino Hotel Atlantic City (https://hardrockhotelatlanticcity.com/), having 5,000 gaming machines and 250 table games.
Atlantic City casinos, along with their payout return percentages for mid-2016 through mid-2017, are::
- Bally’s Atlantic City – Payback Return: 90.9%
- Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa – Payback Return: 91.6%
- Caesars Atlantic City – Payback Return: 91.0%
- Golden Nugget Atlantic City – Payback Return: 90.7%
- Hard Rock Casino Hotel Atlantic City – Opens May 28, 2018 (expected)
- Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City – Payback Return: 91.7%
- Resorts Casino Hotel – Payback Return: 90.8%
- Tropicana Casino & Resort – Payback Return: 90.5%
The Wild Wild West Casino is officially a portion of Bally’s Atlantic City, but is often considered by the public to be a separate casino.
Within New Jersey is also three pari-mutual facilities with live horse racing and daily simulcast race betting, including Freehold Raceway, Monmouth Park, and Meadowland Racetrack. The Borgata is the only Atlantic City casino to offer simulcasting and race book, but only 105 seats are available.
Five other off-track betting halls currently exist, including Winners Bayonne as well as four Favorites facilities located in Gloucester Township, Toms River, Vineland and Woodbridge.
New Jersey slot machine casino gambling currently consists of 7 casinos located in Atlantic City, with another opening in late May 2018. New Jersey’s gambling laws are the most permissive in the U.S. Sports betting is an active issue, but not currently allowed.
New Jersey state gaming regulations require that all slot machines have a payout return of at least 83%. Mid-2016 to mid-2017 annual reporting shows each casino offers a payout return of at least 90% for gaming machines and table games combined.
During their peak in 2006, when they were the only commercial casinos in the eastern U.S., Atlantic City casinos were an economic boon. Subsequent openings of casinos and racinos throughout the eastern states extremely reduced the profitability of Atlantic City casinos.
However, economic growth has been steadily occurring for several years. As a result, another two casinos being proposed in Meadowlands as well as Jersey City.
- New Jersey Slot Machine Payout Statistics”, Steve Bourie’s American Casino Guide 2018 Ed., Casino Vacations Press, Inc., ©2018, ISBN: 978-1-883768-27-0.
- “Overview”, Casino Control Commission, State of New Jersey, Retrieved January 6, 2018.
- “New Jersey Gambling Laws”, Gambling-Law-US.com, Retrieved January 6, 2018.
- “New Jersey Casinos”, World Casino Directory, Retrieved January 6, 2018.
- “New Jersey Gambling Law”, Gambling Sites.com, Retrieved January 6, 2018.
Other State-By-State Articles from Professor Slots
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