Category Archives: New Jersey

Glenn Straub brings New Jersey to court over PILOT casino program

Florida-based developer Glenn Straub is suing the state of New Jersey for what he calls an unfair imposition of property tax on Atlantic City’s shuttered Revel Casino Hotel.

Glenn Straub brings New Jersey to court over PILOT casino programThe Press of Atlantic City reported that Straub questioned New Jersey’s PILOT program before the Atlantic County Superior Court on October 14, complaining that the state sent him a tax bill $3 million higher than it should be.

“It’s crazy,” Straub said of the PILOT, according to the news report. “It’s not a casino, because the state says we need a license. They are penalizing us millions and millions of dollars.”

Under the New Jersey’s casino payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) program, casinos will have to shell out $120 million this year instead of property taxes. The program was intended to bring balance to the wobbly New Jersey’s tax collection base amid left and right casino tax appeals.

The city incurred budget deficits as a result of the costly litigation and eventual state takeover.

But Straub, in his petition, argued that it is unfair for him to pay a tax bill that is $3 million more than it should be for Revel, especially since the property was derelict and no longer operating by the time the program was implemented.

Straub purchased Revel at a bankruptcy auction two years ago for $82 million. The property has remained idle since closing in September 2014.

Atlantic City, according to Straub, was asking him to pay $8.3 million in taxes despite not having gaming at the property. Straub contends that he should be taken off the PILOT program since he technically didn’t own the property when it was still a functioning casino.

“The PILOT Act penalizes it by requiring it to pay based on the fact that at one time the property was licensed to operate as a casino, but does not generate the level of revenue as casino properties because no casino operates there and, in fact, never did operate there in the entire ownership period of the plaintiff,” according to the complaint.


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New Jersey introduces bill allowing New Jersey casinos to operate during state shutdown

New Jersey lawmakers are no longer taking any chances that Atlantic City casinos might be forced to close in the event of another state government shutdown due to a budget impasse.

New Jersey introduces Bill allowing New Jersey casinos to operate during state shutdownAtlantic City casinos were almost forced to shut down this week after the state legislature and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie failed to pass a budget on time.

The casino shutdown was averted after both branches of the state government were able to reconcile their differences before the seven-day leeway given to casinos ended.

To prevent such economic inconvenience, The Press of Atlantic City reported that state Senate President Steve Sweeney and Senators Jim Whelan and Jeff Van Drew introduced a bill seeking to amend the law that allows New Jersey’s casinos to keep their doors open for seven days after state government shuts down.

Whelan, who sponsored the original seven-day law, said the new bill will now let the casinos stay open indefinitely.

“The casinos continue to be the driving force for the economy in the city and the entire region,” said Whelan, D-Atlantic. “Atlantic City is turning around, and to allow the casinos to close now or at any time in the future would be destructive to the lives of the casino workers and their families and would create an economic riptide with negative consequences for the entire city and region.”

Several lawmakers, however, raised their eyebrows over the necessity of the bill, especially since “essential” employees are not affected by the state shutdown.

Christie, according to the report, signed an executive order in 2010 that deemed employees at the Casino Control Commission “essential.”

Still, the governor said Sunday that, through the first reading of the 2008 law, he believed the casinos and racetracks around the state were scheduled to close.

All items must go in Taj Mahal Casino Liquidation Sale

Elsewhere in Atlantic City, National Content Liquidators has started the auction of all items inside the shuttered Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort, which was once owned by President Donald Trump.

Fortune reported that the chandeliers, sofas, coffee tables, televisions, beds, and even a grand piano were among the offerings up for auction, which started on Thursday. The auction will continue until all the items are gone, according to the government liquidators.

Trump opened up the $1 billion casino in 1990 before it filed for bankruptcy the following year.

Billionaire Carl Icahn, who purchased the casino, shut the business for good after a labor dispute. The property was then sold to Hard Rock International in March for about $50 million.


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