January 20, 2016
By Frank Gilliam The behavior of the New Jersey government toward Atlantic City in recent days can be compared to that of a mugger - a robber who takes his victim's money, demands his jewelry, and then threatens to shoot him for not having enough money. Let me explain. While it's without doubt that Atlantic City faces difficult financial circumstances, much of the difficulty is caused by the state. For decades, the state and its agencies have treated Atlantic City as their own bank, taking more than $1 billion.
November 21, 2015 |
Stockton University's dream of an island campus in Atlantic City will have new life on the other side of town. Although Stockton has not completed its $23 million sale of the former Showboat Casino Hotel, where its previous plan for an Atlantic City campus unraveled, new plans are underway to build the Galloway college a campus at the southern end of Atlantic City. Christopher Paladino, head of the newly formed Atlantic City Development Corp. (ACDevCo), said the independent, not-for-profit organization was going ahead with plans to build an Atlantic City campus for Stockton, to open in the fall of 2018.
July 16, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Take my empty buildings and lots - please. This is the message Atlantic City is sending, by issuing requests for proposals for, well, pretty much the entire town. The properties available for reimagining range from a pier to a kiosk, from the Boardwalk to outer neighborhoods. In all, 14 vacant lots and buildings owned by the city or, in a few cases, the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority are included in the RFPs. Planning director Elizabeth Terenik is to discuss the properties at a noon meeting Wednesday in City Hall.
June 14, 2015 |
SOMERS POINT, N.J. - Poetry was apparently too controversial for Atlantic City this year, as a plan to pay poets to read their work at the city Farmers' Market was abandoned by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority after some political blowback. But Somers Point has held the line against the (haiku) haters - naming, and paying, the bay town's first poet laureate, Northwestern grad-turned-wine-store-event-planner Maria Provenzano of Egg Harbor Township. Provenzano, 26, will put the concept to its first real test Saturday night, as she does two short, mostly unannounced "Pop Up Poetry" events, one at 7 p.m. at the bar at Sandi Point Coastal Bistro, formerly the famed Mac's, followed by another at Gregory's.
February 11, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - When Ralph Hunter Sr. saw Glynnis Reed arrive at her new exhibition in the city's Arts Garage the other day, he walked across the hall from his African American Heritage Museum to tell her how much he thought of her work. The exhibition, called "Ascending Beauty," features mesmerizing digital creations composed of Reed's photographs of African American women set against, inside, behind, and through her photographic images of nature. Hunter, 77, said he was so taken by a piece titled Bessie - a portrait of Reed's grandmother, sculpturally ending just below the shoulders, bustlike, with painterly light and greenery streaked around and across her face - that he bought it on the spot.
January 24, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Mayor Don Guardian joked last week that despite the calamitous year his city had just experienced, "at least we're not Detroit. " On Thursday, Gov. Christie hired the man who steered the Motor City out of bankruptcy, Kevyn Orr, to help straighten out Atlantic City. It was a scenario that Guardian had strenuously resisted for his casino town and one that caught the one-year-old administration by surprise. The mayor met his two new high-powered overseers - one a bankruptcy lawyer, the other an accountant turned corporate restructuring specialist - for the first time Thursday.
January 16, 2015 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Glenn Straub has yet to complete his acquisition of the former Revel Casino Hotel for $94.5 million, but Mayor Don Guardian said Wednesday that he likes what he hears from the Florida investor. "He wants to bring in new businesses, bring in new jobs, and pay taxes. Not too many people talk to me about those subjects these days," Guardian said after a panel discussion organized by the Urban Land Institute at the Atlantic City Convention Center. Beyond Straub's still-forming plans for Revel, panelists depicted a city that is bubbling with ideas, including, Guardian said, the possibility of an Atlantic City medical school under consideration by AtlantiCare, which is in the process of merging with Geisinger Health System.
December 19, 2014 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Charlie Birnbaum, the piano tuner who is fighting to keep his family home in Atlantic City from being seized by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, delivered a petition Wednesday with more than 100,000 signatures to Gov. Christie. In addition, Birnbaum's attorneys are now arguing that Christie's plans for Atlantic City make the CRDA's efforts to seize his home even more questionable than when a Superior Court judge ruled the CRDA was within its rights to seize the house.
November 19, 2014 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Superior Court Judge Julio Mendez ruled Monday against Charlie Birnbaum, a piano tuner fighting to keep his family home near the former Revel casino from being seized by the state casino redevelopment authority. In a 27-page opinion issued Monday evening, Mendez said the state's enactment of the Tourism District Act is "the legislative declaration of a legitimate public purpose" that would justify the seizure of property by eminent domain. "The fundamental public purpose contained in this legislation is to promote tourism, to create and protect jobs in Atlantic City, and to assist the ailing gaming industry," Mendez wrote.
November 17, 2014 |
ATLANTIC CITY - Can Atlantic City be a destination resort with fewer cops? Among the proposals posted last week on the website run by the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority was "rightsizing" the city's police and fire departments. The recommendation, posted the day after the second city summit led by Gov. Christie, calls for reducing the police department from 330 uniformed employees to 285, and the fire department from 261 to 180. It also brought up the possibility of regionalizing both departments to further save costs.