New Jersey iPoker Compact A Distant Dream

New Jersey regulated online poker back in 2013, and over the past year the nascent industry has started to pick up the pace, having generated $26.5 million throughout the whole of 2016, representing a 11% improvement over the previous year. This year has started well, too, with internet poker producing revenues of $2.3 million (+9%) in January, and $2.17 million (+9%) in February.
Of course, such figures pale in comparison to the $170.2 million generated by the state’s online casinos in 2016, and the roughly $18.5 million in revenues New Jersey generates each month from such games. This has led online players to wonder why the Garden State has yet to throw in its lot with the country’s two other regulated states of Nevada and Delaware, who launched their interstate compact in early 2015.
In a recent interview with onlinepokerreport, New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) Director David Rebuck shed further light on the subject by stating his opinion that the Delaware and Nevada compact is too bureaucratic in its present form to be an attractive proposition for New Jersey. Furthermore, Rebuck also said that “We’ve run up against a lot of barriers for interoperability.”
Elaborating further, Rebuck listed a number of problems preventing progress on the issue, including constitutional issues that would require New Jersey to revisit its state gaming laws; Delaware and Nevada having too much control over the direction of the compact; and New Jersey joining the compact as only really benefitting just one New Jersey operator, namely 888. As Rebuck explains:
“When you look at the compact it really only benefits one company. In New Jersey, I can’t do an agreement that only benefits one operator. If there was an opportunity for the other operators [to also benefit] that would be different.”
Suffice to say, the USA’s small online poker market is likely to stay unconnected for sometime to come, although New Jersey has said that it would be more amenable to striking a partnership deal with Pennsylvania, should its neighbor pass legislation in the future.

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