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NJ Voters Want Casinos In Atlantic City Only [AUDIO]

As Atlantic City casinos continue to struggle with revenues, Governor Chris Christie continues to stand by his revitalization plans for the resort town.

Rudi Von Briel, Getty Images

In the latest Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind Poll released this morning reveals voters in the Garden State offer mixed opinions on questions concerning the future of gaming and Atlantic City.

When asked if the state should help Atlantic City developers with tax breaks in order to encourage job growth and increase tax revenue for the state, or whether the state should not use public money to support private enterprise in the area, 41 percent believe tax credits are appropriate, while 50 percent believe public money should not be used.

Krista Jenkins, director of PublicMind and professor of political science at Fairleigh Dickinson University says, “73% of registered voters say they’ve heard very little to nothing about tax incentives despite their role in helping to fund the development of Atlantic City…… Tax credits for developers on the backs of taxpayers may be seen as a government ‘bailout ‘to some and as a ‘jobs creator’ to others.”

As for whether residents favor or oppose the expansion of gaming beyond Atlantic City, only about a third (35%) say they’re supportive, while a majority (56%) express opposition to other areas becoming hot spots for casino gambling. In 2010, a similar question was asked but it was limited to the expansion of gaming to the Meadowlands, opposition remained the most common response. At that time, 49% said they would not like to see the Meadowlands become a site for casino gambling, with 42% in favor.

Jenkins says, “The results could simply point to the ‘NIMBY’(not in my back yard) perspective when considering expanded gambling options. There is no shortage of convenience gambling options for residents in New Jersey due to added gaming options along New Jersey’s borders. The appetite to expand casino gambling options beyond Atlantic City for New Jerseyans is not there yet.”

As you might expect casino goers are more supportive than non-casino goers toward allowing gaming to extend beyond Atlantic City (44% versus 30% respectively).

The statewide poll of 901 registered voters was conducted by telephone with both landline and cell phones from September 6, 2012 through September 12, 2012, and has a margin of error of +/-3.3 percentage points.

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