Beck Applauds Off Track Wagering Bill Extending Sales Tax Refunds to Builders
Continuing her efforts to preserve New Jersey’s horseracing industry by expanding convenience betting options, Senator Beck applauded committee approval of legislation she is sponsoring along with Senate President Stephen Sweeney to encourage construction of off track wagering (OTW) facilities.
The bill, S-1818, would refund sales and use taxes to contractors constructing new OTW facilities that are incurred on materials and supplies used in the project. It was approved unanimously by the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee.
“Convenience wagering is a huge part of the plan to make sure horseracing can continue to exist in New Jersey without state support,” said Beck. “Last session, we were successful in extending the deadline to issue remaining state permits for OTWs. This tax break is a companion incentive to help ensure that the additional permits are used and the facilities are constructed.”
Beck said that extending more wagering outlets to race watchers would help New Jersey compete with successful racing and gaming industries in Pennsylvania and New York that are hurting the state’s market share. “Just like in any other sector of our economy, we have to be able to compete with our neighbors,” she stated. “We cannot expect the gaming industry at large, and horseracing in particular, to continue to be viable in New Jersey if we do not fight to keep bets here and attract more customers.”
The bill now moves to the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism, and Historic Preservation Committee before receiving a vote in the full Senate.
Toms River is home to Favorites at Toms River, an off-track wagering and sports bar.
In November, New Jersey residents voted to approve a referendum that would legalize sports betting. Currently residents can place bets on horse races in 7 of Atlantic City’s Casinos, at the four tracks located within the state or at one of three Favorites OTW outlets, located in Toms River, Vineland and Woodbridge.
The 2011 referendum vote and the state’s tax breaks, legislators are hoping, will lead to an influx in development and investment in the industry.