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Election Day Explainer: Why Richmond Casino, NJ Sports Betting Queries Failed

Election Day Explainer: Why Richmond Casino, NJ Sports Betting Concerns Failed

Posted on: November five, 2021, 12:21h.&nbsp

Final updated on: November four, 2021, 06:35h.

Election Day 2021 featured two major inquiries that stood to effect the US gaming business. But every single ballot referendum was rejected by voters, which begs the question, “Why?”

Richmond casino Virginia election 2021
Urban 1 CEO Alfred Liggins’ (shown above) vision for a casino resort in Richmond, Va., was rejected on Election Day. A proposal to expand sports betting in New Jersey was also defeated. (Image: Casino.org)

Whilst Casino.org doesn’t have all the answers, we dug deep to much better comprehend why voters in Richmond rejected the $565 million One particular Casino + Resort proposal for the Virginia capital, and why New Jerseyans opted not to further expand sports betting.

Richmonders Reject One particular Casino + Resort

Virginia legalized commercial gambling last year by way of a bill developed to spur financial activity in distressed cities. Five cities certified to ask constituents no matter whether they assistance using a industrial casino resort as a indicates to bring their town’s new jobs and produce additional tax income.

Norfolk, Portsmouth, Bristol, and Danville each and every passed regional casino referendums for the duration of the 2020 election. And all four cities did so convincingly.

Richmond opted to wait a year due to the fact of considerable interest from casino firms.

The capital in the end received six bids, such as proposals from nationally known organizations, such as Golden Nugget and Bally’s. The Cordish Businesses and its Live! casino brand also bid, as did Wind Creek Hospitality, the Pamunkey Indian Tribe, and Urban One particular.

The pitches garnered sturdy feedback, with a lot more affluent communities in the capital region largely opposing a casino in their neighborhoods. Race was injected into the matter when flyers opposing the Cordish $600 million blueprint for the historic Scott’s Addition neighborhood were passed around.

More traffic. Higher crime. Reduced top quality of life for us. Tell them to construct it over there,” study the flyer, which led several to query exactly where “over there” is.

Richmond, by means of its Resort Casino Evaluation Panel, in the end went with Urban One particular, a Black-owned media conglomerate with no experience operating a casino or a resort. Urban One partnered with Peninsula Pacific Entertainment, an skilled casino operator, to assist guide the project.&nbspThe $565 million undertaking was set to be built subsequent to the Philip Morris tobacco plant, and was to be the initial Black-owned casino in the history of the United States.

Richmond residents cast 78,381 votes on the governor’s race. The city gubernatorial vote went vastly in favor of Democratic candidate Terry McAuliffe, who lent his assistance to One particular Casino. The former governor received more than 77 percent of the vote in Richmond, but lost statewide to Republican newcomer Glenn Youngkin.

As for the casino query, 77,823 Richmonders weighed in. A tiny much more than 51 percent voted “no” to deny Urban One’s casino ambitions.

Analyzing the voting data, the majority of the “no” vote came north of the James River where the majority of Richmond’s wealthier neighborhoods are located. Though they still voted heavily Democrat — and backed McAuliffe who endorsed the casino — that demographic overwhelmingly went against the gambling initiative.

Regardless of assistance from celebrities, including Missy Elliott and Jamie Foxx, the casino query was defeated.

“Concerns had been raised, such as increased crime, targeted traffic, and doubts that the project would lead to other economic development in the location, which is amongst Richmond’s far more impoverished districts,” explained Kate Andrews, deputy editor of Virginia Enterprise.

On social media, a lot of gave their personal opinions as to why 1 Casino failed.

New Jerseyans Reject Sports Betting Expansion

New Jersey oddsmakers take a lot more legal bets on sports every month than any other state with regulated sports wagering. Licensed oddsmakers in New Jersey, both retail and on the web, took nearly $6 billion in sports bets in 2020.

To help New Jersey sustain its front-runner position, business stakeholders argued that the ban on college sports betting involving state schools or taking location within the state, have to be repealed.

New Jerseyans were presented with the chance to do so on Election Day. But 57 percent — more than 1.1 million voters — responded “No” to permitting oddsmakers to take bets on Rutgers, Seton Hall, Princeton, and other New Jersey-primarily based universities.

One particular prospective concern with lifting the ban might have been that college athletes would really feel much more stress and/or face more scrutiny on social media since of the added consideration and cash involved,” explained Jane Bokunewicz, director of Stockton University’s Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism. “This is something that skilled athletes have faced, with some questioning whether sports betting was a contributing issue.”

Even though the gaming sector hoped the sports betting expansion question would pass, political pundits believe the absence of any genuine campaign to get out the message in the end led to its failure.