Atlantic City Struggling As Neighboring States Increase Casinos

June 21st, 2010-  By Bryan Cross

Despite the struggling economy as it relates to the gaming industry, specifically in the upper Eastern seaboard, New Jersey and Atlantic City is having to deal with a significant increase in competition of their neighboring states.

Pennsylvania has brought in table games into their state casinos, adding games such as blackjack, poker, and roulette will be in casinos within weeks.  Pennsylvania looks to increase their gaming industry by a large margin, with table games a large step forward.

Delaware is also joining the table games club as well, increasing the arsenal in their state casinos as well.

These new campaigns are spearheaded by lawmakers wanting to create a stream of revenue by both residents and tourists alike, keeping the money spent in the state.

The addition of table games in the nearby states have caused Atlantic City to struggle mightily, as each passing month the revenue stream decreases by noteworthy margins.

“We’re getting hammered from every which way right now, and nobody is standing up for Atlantic City’s survival,” remarked Sen. Raymond Lesniak of New Jersey.

There was a 13 percent total decrease in 2009 suffered by Atlantic City, and the trend is seemingly continuing through half of 2010.

“We’ve faced challenges before, but what we’re going through right now is much more intense than those other times because of the economy,” remarked Linda Kassekert, who is the chairwoman of New Jersey’s Casino Control Commission.

While Atlantic City is struggling, Pennsylvania is beginning to reap the rewards of increasing their casino game availability, tabbing nearly a 25 percent increase from a year ago.

“Slot machines have been a tremendous success here, and I’m convinced the table games can be even better,” stated Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell.

“I basically said, ‘Look, we’re not stopping Pennsylvanians from gambling anyway; they’re just going to New Jersey, Delaware and West Virginia,'” he added. “We might as well capture some of the $3 billion our people spend gambling in those states.”

Kassekert perhaps summed it up best with her analysis of the situation in Atlantic City.

“The world around us has changed,” she stated. “We need more and better attractions to make it through this challenge.”

New Jersey Casinos are banking on the ban of online casinos being lifted, as several Atlantic City establishments will formulate Online Casinos.

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