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June 24, 2015

Poll: Most N.J. residents don't want casinos in North Jersey

A poll by Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind of 913 New Jersey residents released Tuesday found that the majority oppose allowing casinos outside Atlantic City.

"The public is questioning the logic behind allowing the spread of casino gambling," Krista Jenkins, a political science professor of political science and director of PublicMind, told "They don't seem to be sold on the idea of saving the gaming industry in the state by allowing it to spread."

The poll revealed that 56 percent of residents oppose building casinos outside Atlantic City, while just 37 percent support it.

Allowing gaming outside Atlantic City would require an amendment to the state constitution, which would require voter approval. 

North Jersey lawmakers, including Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson), want to put the question on the ballot this year. South Jersey lawmakers have resisted that, even though some – including Senate President Stephen Sweeney (D-Gloucester) – have been open to allowing casino gambling in northern New Jersey if hundreds of millions in proceeds go towards helping Atlantic City rebuild.

Supporters of casino expansion have proposed dedicating $100 million a year in North Jersey casino proceeds to struggling Atlantic City.

Plans for a Hard Rock Cafe casino at the Meadowlands Sports Complex were revealed earlier this month.

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