Tougher road ahead for NJ casino expansion referendum plans

The inability of New Jersey lawmakers to agree on a plan for two new casinos in the northern part of the state is making it harder to put the question before voters in November.

A key deadline passed Tuesday without a deal among the Senate and Assembly on which of two competing casino expansion plans should go to the ballot.

Now, in order for a November vote to happen, a bill must pass early next year by a three-fifths majority, making it more vulnerable to opposition from Atlantic City-area politicians.

Had both houses agreed on a plan before Tuesday, it could have passed by a simple majority in two consecutive sessions and gone to the ballot.

At issue are differences in who can own the new casinos.

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