BY TERESA SCHOFIELD
SPECIAL TO NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM
The internet gambling bill awaiting Governor Christie’s signature this week provides more than just a market for online gaming – it will strengthen the state’s economy and protect children and problem gamblers, according to two white papers issued by the Poker Players Alliance (PPA), the leading poker grassroots advocacy group with more than one million members nationwide and more than 20,000 members in New Jersey.
“We recognize that Governor Christie has some concerns about this bill, and we want to share data and research with him, and with New Jersey residents, to help put their minds at ease and understand the broad value this legislation will provide the state,” said John Pappas, executive director of the PPA.
“These white papers, a compilation of existing studies by experts at Harvard University and Wells Fargo among others, show that the Internet gambling bill would bring almost 4,000 new jobs to the state, add millions of dollars in revenue and is the most effective way to keep children safe and curb problem gambling.”
Specifically, if signed into law, the internet gambling legislation will allow:
* Atlantic City to thrive. The bill would create almost 4,000 new jobs, raise $150 million in tax revenue. Local unions and an independent analysis by Wells Fargo all agree that online gambling will be a boon to the city and land-based casinos.
* Problem gambling to be curbed. Study after study finds that online gambling inherently provides more and better mechanisms to prevent and combat problem gaming than are available in the offline gambling market.
* Children to be protected. A 2010 Harvard University study found that “the best way to protect families and consumers in connection with cyber gambling is by legalizing it.”
“Like Governor Christie, I initially had doubts about how regulating online gambling could protect children, but after careful analysis I’ve come to realize that regulating online gambling – rather than banning it – is the best way to keep our children safe,” said Parry Aftab, a New Jersey Internet privacy and security lawyer and founder of WiredSafety, the world’s first cybersafety group. “As I’ve said in testimony before Congress, we must adopt strong regulations to protect consumers, especially vulnerable citizens like children. I know how much the Governor cares about protecting his state’s citizens, especially families. Now is the time to show his leadership and regulate the online gambling marketplace.”
To read the white papers and related studies, please visit: http://theppa.org/governor-christie and www.wiredsafety.org.
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About The Poker Players Alliance
The Poker Players Alliance (www.theppa.org; http://twitter.com/ppapoker; www.facebook.com/theppa) is a nonprofit membership organization comprised of over 1,000,000 online and offline poker players and enthusiasts from around the United States who have joined together to speak with one voice to promote the game and to protect poker players' rights.