Things looking up for Atlantic City in 2018

Wayne Parry, Associated Press | 1/2/2018, 6:19 p.m.
The last traces of President Donald Trump's onetime casino empire could vanish. Someone may finally buy and reopen the former ...
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David Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, said the new competition could hurt the seven casinos that currently operate but benefit customers with more choices.

Giannantonio acknowledged that two reopened casinos could cause "a short-term blip for everyone," but said they should bring in enough new customers to grow the market and not just steal customers from existing casinos.

One big opportunity: the U.S. Supreme Court will rule sometime between now and June on New Jersey's case seeking to legalize sports betting; it's legal only in four states that met a 1991 deadline to approve it: Delaware, Montana, Nevada and Oregon.

And one big potential threat faded last month when Sweeney, the state senate president, told The Associated Press that he doesn't plan to seek a second statewide referendum on whether to allow a casino in northern New Jersey "anytime soon, if ever." Sweeney, a southern New Jersey Democrat, said he doesn't see sufficient support for the measure, which was rejected by nearly 80 percent of voters in a 2016 ballot question.

November 2018 is the earliest proponents can try again to place the matter before voters. But even Jeff Gural, who operates the Meadowlands Racetrack, where the new casino would go, can't see a second attempt for at least another five years or so.

There will be some new nearby competition in February when Resorts World opens a casino in Sullivan County, New York, about an hour north of New Jersey. -- (AP)