The Latest: New Jersey warns against premature sports bets

The Latest: New Jersey warns against premature sports bets
FILE - In this May 14, 2018, file photo, men watch horse racing on an array of screens at Monmouth Park Racetrack in Oceanport, N.J. New Jersey’s proposed sports betting law is heading down to the wire, with final legislative approval expected on Thursday, June 7. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — The Latest on whether sports betting can begin Friday in New Jersey (all times local):

10:30 a.m.

New Jersey officials are cracking the whip on horse racing tracks that are contemplating starting to offer sports betting before Gov. Phil Murphy signs the bill permitting it.

The New Jersey Racing Commission has written to the state’s three horse tracks warning them not to start taking sports bets until the bill is signed.

Tracks that jump the gun could jeopardize their ability to be licensed under the new law.

In an attempted end-run around the Democratic governor, New Jersey legislators eliminated language in the bill that prohibited bets from being taken before the bill is signed.

But Racing Commission Director Frank Zanzuccki warned them late Thursday not to.


12:20 a.m.

The first full day after New Jersey legislators approved a bill to legalize sports betting began with no one actually offering it yet.

But that could change by the end of the day on Friday, depending on whether casinos and racetracks are willing to move on their own and ignore the state’s Democratic governor, who has given no indication of when he might act on the bill.

All eyes are on Gov. Phil Murphy now that the state Legislature unanimously passed the bill Thursday to allow sports betting three weeks after winning a U.S. Supreme Court case that cleared the way for them and all other states to do so.

Technically, casinos and tracks are free to take bets now. But none has voiced willingness to act before the governor does.