CASINO GAMBLING AS A “GROWTH POLE” STRATEGY AND ITS EFFECT ON CRIME*

Authors

  • Joseph Friedman,

    1. Respectively, Associate Professor, Department of Finance, Temple University; Professor, Department of Economics, Temple University; and Senior Lecturer, Ben-Gurion University, Israel.
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  • Simon Hakim,

    1. Respectively, Associate Professor, Department of Finance, Temple University; Professor, Department of Economics, Temple University; and Senior Lecturer, Ben-Gurion University, Israel.
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  • J. Weinblatt

    1. Respectively, Associate Professor, Department of Finance, Temple University; Professor, Department of Economics, Temple University; and Senior Lecturer, Ben-Gurion University, Israel.
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  • *

    This study was partially funded by a grant from the Department of Justice, The National Institute of Justice, 1985.

Abstract

ABSTRACT Casinos are often considered as a “growth pole” strategy to revitalize dilapidated regions. However, voters often reject casinos due to their perceived adverse impact on crime.

Using a quasi-experimental design we analyze the impact of the casinos on crime spillover from Atlantic City to other localities in the region. We found that the level of crime in localities adjacent to Atlantic City and along the major nontoll routes to Philadelphia and New York City up to approximately 30 miles from Atlantic City rose significantly following the introduction of casinos. Crime levels are higher than they would have been in the absence of casinos.

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