At some point today, an artist armed with a chainsaw will hack into the trunk of a dead oak tree in a Pine Barrens park. In life, the oak tree was witness to more than a century of history in the village of Richland. In death, it will be a monument to that history.
Dr. John Baker and Dr. Fred Dalzell worked the sidelines of Holy Spirit High School football games for parts of five decades.
The prominent South Jersey orthopedic surgeon John Baker likes to talk about the time he met the eminent South Jersey high school football coach Ed Byrnes to talk about becoming the team doctor for the Holy Spirit Spartans.
Water Rates Rise
Atlantic City’s Municipal Utilities Authority has raised rates 10 percent to $50 a quarter (they’re still the lowest in the area). The rate rise was needed, the board said, to cover a budget shortfall after one of the authority’s biggest customers stopped buying its water. Who was that big customer? New Jersey American Water, whose lobbyist is Philip Norcross, brother to South Jersey power broker George Norcross. American Water – which could be a possible bidder for Atlantic City’s MUA if it is put up for sale under the state’s takeover of the city’s finances – is negotiating with the MUA to buy a reduced amount of water.
The dark days of Atlantic City are behind it and Borgata could consider new developments, says the guy at the front of MGM, which runs the city’s most successful casino. Discussing the land that MGM owns around Borgata, Chief Executive Jim Murren said it could be developed. “We’re going to grow our business,” he said. Read more at NJ.com. Meanwhile, a new bill designed to prevent casino owners from holding licenses after shutting down a casino – apparently in an effort to prevent the Taj Mahal from reopening with new labor contracts – will get a hearing today.
This week was an odd one weather-wise, but it made for some great pictures. It started warm and wet, then there was the Wednesday of Fog, then it turned cold, apparently to get into the holiday spirit in time for a whole lot of tree lightings and parades on Friday and Saturday. Here’s our selection of some of the week’s best images – this time they’re all from Atlantic County, via @rachel_ellentuck, @iamderricklogan, @listenofabc, @nigojapics, @worldwydewilliams and @suziqleigh.
A Trump Museum
A Stockton University professor and a tour operator are collecting Trump artifacts and hoping to open a museum in Atlantic City all about the soon-to-be President Trump. On the one hand, it’s something that would potentially draw visitors, provide employment and it’s not a casino… On the other hand, it’s a museum to someone who prompts mixed – but usually strong – emotions around here. What do you think? The Press of Atlantic City has the story.
There’s a long look at Atlantic City’s finances on Bloomberg today that basically concludes that the future is likely to be a double whammy of tax hikes and spending cuts, which I guess everyone already knew is the way to dig yourself out of a debt hole, but there’s something about the graphics on the page – they depict the drop in tax take – that is so stark it’s hard not to feel sympathy pains for the taxpayers in the city. The blink-and-you’d-miss-it takeaway from the Bloomberg piece is that the city workers’ union is considering legal action to thwart any move by the city’s overseer to change workers’ contract. If anyone wants to be cheered up, they can take a look at our take on how the city’s crisis is actually a problem for the whole county, although that gets less attention. In even more depressing local news (it’s one of those days, apparently), there was another shooting in Hamilton Township last night – Lynda Cohen at Breaking AC has the details here. In wider New Jersey news, there have been some developments around tackling the opioid crisis that are worth paying attention to. A group of hospitals a long way north of Atlantic County, but connected to networks down here, have agreed to provide Union County police with free Narcan, the drug used to counteract opioid overdoses.
The latest chapter in the sorry tale of the casino formerly known as the Revel involves its current owner, Glenn Straub, suing the Casino Control Commission for holding up his plans to “make Atlantic City great again” (and yes, his lawyer really said that.) Last time we checked, TEN (as it’s hard to remember it’s now called), had the go-ahead to open next year as a hotel, but the current issue is whether or not Straub will be able to let someone else operate a casino in the property. Maybe Straub is just in the wrong business. Little Water Distillery, which has been joking about racing Revel to open, is pretty much there. We see your glow-ball response #Revel, and raise you two security lights and building permit on the window…… pic.twitter.com/raPqtLN97e
— Little Water (@littlewaterdist) September 3, 2016
The distillery is Atlantic City’s first-ever lawful producer of spirits and now has the necessary federal, state and city permissions to open its doors – we took a look last week and got to meet the owners.
Atlantic City will soon boast its first ever legal distillery, thanks to brothers Eric and Mark Ganter. The Little Water Distillery may not be the first to ever produce spirits in the city, but it will be the first to do so with federal and state licenses.
Atlantic County Improvement Authority is seeking sealed bids for demolition of two Atlantic City houses. One of the three-story homes is 2415 Arctic Ave between N. Georgia and N. Florida Aves. The other is 104 South Albion Place, just up the road from Chef Vola’s between Pacific Avenue and the Boardwalk. Bids will be opened at 2.30 pm on Tuesday Dec. 6.
Northfield has bids open for professional services and, separately, for a fire hose and equipment. The town is seeking professionals to provide services including bond counsel, municipal solicitor, labor relations attorney and land surveyor for next year. More details on the sought-for services are here. Proposals must be submitted by 4 pm Dec. 6.