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Atlantic City Gamblers, Casinos to Pay More

2 July 2003

ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey – As reported by the Associated Press: “Ante up, gamblers.

“Parking your car at a casino hotel, staying the night, supplying casinos with slot machines -- it's all about to get more expensive, thanks to a state budget that boosts taxes on casinos, their customers and some vendors.

“The $24.1 billion spending plan, adopted after months of partisan wrangling between lawmakers and a bitter fight between Gov. James E. McGreevey and the casinos, deals $90 million in tax increases to New Jersey's gambling industry.

“…Under the budget as passed, Atlantic City's 11 casinos would be taxed on the rooms, meals and show tickets they give to high-rolling gamblers to curry favor. The 4.25 percent tax would raise about $26 million.

“In addition, casinos' net profits would be taxed for the first time, raising $20 million. The 7.5 percent tax, which would expire after three years, would be levied on a casino's net profits, including management fees.

“But the tax also includes an incentive, allowing casinos to reduce their net profits tax liability by adding rooms, parking garages or stores to their complexes.

“…Whether the increased costs are passed down to the millions of gamblers who stream into Atlantic City to visit the 24-hour-a-day casinos remains to be seen.

“…But the budget plan also taxes gamblers directly, boosting parking fees at the casino-hotels' garages to $3 per car, from $2…”

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