New Jersey Congressman Seeks Exception To Federal Sports Betting Ban

This story was published more than 12 years ago.

Two days after a referendum passed which would legalize sports betting in New Jersey, U.S. Representative Frank Pallone Jr. is looking to obtain an exemption from the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA).

The goal of the attempt, according to news reports, is to save New Jersey a long and costly legal battle over whether the Garden State will be allowed to legally allow sports betting. Speaking to the Associated Press Wednesday, Pallone said: "New Jersey voted for, and deserves a bite of the apple in terms of sports betting. Any delay in making this possible is a loss of profits for local businesses, which is unacceptable."

Pallone's legislation differs from Senator Ray Lesniak's, in that it would keep college sports from being wagered on.

Speaking about the Pallone bill, State Representative Ruben J. Ramos, Jr. said: "Our racetracks are fighting an unfair fight against the competition. Sports betting is a billion-dollar industry, and only four states are allowed by federal law to benefit from legal sports wagering. This is a first step towards adding New Jersey to that list, generating tax dollars, creating jobs and breathing new life into our racetracks."