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US – Revel owner slams red tape for delayed reopening

By - 22 June 2016

The delayed reopening of Atlantic City’s Revel casino has been slammed as ‘inappropriate and unnecessary’ by its Glenn Straub, who has threatened legal action.

Mr. Straub’s Polo North Country Club, which now owns the former Revel, had planned to open the casino on July 15 but is being prevented from leasing 150,000 square feet of the property for 25 years to a casino operator so the property as a whole can be reopened for use as a casino, hotel, amusement destination, spa, major resort, and as a venue for various nightclubs. If reopened as contemplated, it would bring employment for over 3,000 Atlantic City and other local residents and generate millions of dollars annually in taxes for the City, County, and the State.

Mr. Straub said: “Instead of welcoming this prospect, New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement has imposed a roadblock that is inappropriate and unnecessary. Despite Polo North only being a landlord, the Division is requiring it to comply with the more extensive licensing standards imposed on casino operators as opposed to the less stringent standards imposed on vendors. This requirement is being imposed even though the proposed tenant will meet the licensing standards for casino potion of 6,000,000 square foot property.

“Polo North’s application has been pending for months; it has paid over $100,000.00 for New Jersey’s licensing investigation; and some of the largest and most experienced casino law firms in New Jersey contend that the extensive licensing standard is not appropriate nor warranted,” he added. “Despite the foregoing, New Jersey is pressing ahead to impose its costly, time consuming, and unnecessarily stringent licensing requirement on Polo North, even though it is only a landlord.

“This is just one more example of New Jersey’s anti-business attitude. What is especially galling is that New Jersey is engaging in this conduct when it has imposed a strict time limit on Atlantic City putting its financial house in order. This means that the State’s actions are making it impossible for Atlantic City to meet the State imposed requirement of a balanced budget within 150 days thereby guaranteeing a takeover by the State. This all occurs when Atlantic County has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the country, and the region is suffering an unemployment rate well in excess of the rest of New Jersey.

“If the former Revel were reopened as contemplated, in a timely fashion, it would go a long way to cure the financial ills of Atlantic City and prevent a takeover by New Jersey. It would lower the foreclosure and unemployment rates in the area, it would positively impact the tax rates of surrounding municipalities, and it would stimulate South Jersey’s economic recovery because it would be a major source of jobs and tax revenues. Polo will not hesitate to use legal remedies to right this wrong.”

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