New Jersey racetrack continues sports betting lawsuit

NEWARK, N.J. — The New Jersey racetrack that led the successful push to overturn a federal sports betting ban isn't giving up in its attempt to get monetary damages from the sports leagues that opposed the effort.

A state horse racing association has claimed in legal filings that Monmouth Park was improperly prevented from implementing sports betting by a judge's order in 2014, and it wants payment of a $3.4 million bond, with interest, that the leagues posted in 2014.

The New Jersey Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association also wants roughly $140 million in damages, which it claims is lost revenue between 2014 and this past May, when a U.S. Supreme Court ruling allowed states to pursue sports gambling this year.

A federal judge rejected their argument this month, writing that the fact the federal Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in 2018 didn't weigh in the association's favor.

That was because the central issue in 2014 was whether a state law was in violation of the act, not whether it was constitutional, U.S. District Judge Michael Shipp wrote.

The association appealed Shipp's ruling last week. The case will now be heard by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia.

Monmouth Park began accepting sports bets in June, a few weeks after the Supreme Court ruling. Since then, more than a half-billion dollars has been bet on sports at the state's racetracks and casinos through the end of October.

Revenue from sports gambling helped Atlantic City's casino industry post an increase of nearly 16 percent in gambling revenue in October compared with a year ago.

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