Although rumors are swirling of an end to New Jersey’s government shutdown, as of this hour the state, and its casinos, are closed for business. It is pretty remarkable, when you think about it, that a huge and productive industry has been closed for lack of immediate government oversight. Linda Kassekert, chair of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission (CCC), lamented the turn of events:
Today, I had to do something that none of my predecessors ever had to do…..and something I hope and pray none of my successors will have to do. Today, New Jersey shut down its casino industry. This is something that no one ever wanted to see happen, but, as you know, Gov. Corzine ordered the shutdown of non essential state services on an orderly basis. On Sunday, after consulting with casino executives, security officials, with the Division of Gaming Enforcement, New Jersey State Police as well as Mayor Levy and Chief of Police Mooney, I issued an order for the cessation of gaming as of 8 o’clock this morning.
Why did the Borgata, and like-palaces of bad decision-making, have to close?
The easy answer is that gambling is presumptively illegal, authorized by 24-hour operation of the CCC. Easy, true, and boring.