Property Taxes, New Drug-Detox Clinic – Friday’s Roundup

Property Taxes
NJSpotlight has another fantastic interactive map on their site today that compares property tax bills across the state. The map is fascinating since it compares the average property tax bill by municipality, not the actual tax rate. By average tax bill, Atlantic City looks pretty reasonable compared with Linwood, Northfield, Longport and Margate. But as we all know around here, Atlantic City’s tax rate is through the roof ($3.859 per $100 of taxable assessed value, according to this Department of Community Affairs (DCA) data from 2016). Perhaps more surprisingly, though, if you look at the raw data here on the DCA site, Mullica Township and Egg Harbor City’s tax rates are even higher (at $4.533 and $4.41).

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Casino Winners and Losers, Opioids and Juvenile Sentencing – Tuesday’s Roundup

When the Taj Closed, Who Gained? It might not surprise you to learn that Tropicana was the biggest beneficiary from the Taj’s strike and closure last year (Tropicana and the Trump Taj Mahal have the same owner – Icahn Enterprises). Perhaps more interesting from our exclusive analysis of the winners and losers since the Taj strike is that the Caesars properties lost casino market share. You can read the full story here on Route 40, with data. Safer Oxy Led To More Deaths
We have been following the opioid epidemic in Atlantic County closely and anyone else who is interested should take a look at this piece by Zachary Siegel in the Daily Beast.

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Atlantic City’s Water, Policing and Traffic – MLK Day Roundup

Atlantic City’s Water
Atlantic City’s water authority in May hired a well-known New Jersey-based financial advisor to help it craft a concession plan that could free up some cash for the debt-laden casino resort and stave off a state takeover. Just a few months later, the financial advisor abruptly abandoned its contract with the water authority to begin working with the New Jersey department that would eventually take over Atlantic City. What exactly happened, and what might the state’s insight into the water authority, gleaned through advisor Acacia Financial, mean for its future? Route 40 takes a look here. Policing
Meanwhile, the city’s police will show up for work no matter what happens in talks with the state over cuts to the force or salaries and benefits, PBA president Matt Rogers said, responding to rumors of a strike.

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Original Spartans

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. In New Jersey, state law requires high school football teams to have medical staff on-hand in case of injury. At most schools, this is a paid position, but Holy Spirit in the late 1970s was running its program on a shoestring, and Coach Byrnes was looking for volunteers. Baker was a young doctor, recently transplanted to South Jersey from St.

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A Trump Museum, Earth Shakes, Tax Deals and Narcan – Friday’s Roundup

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.

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NJ/PA Tax U-Turn, Playground Problems and the Burning Pinelands – Wednesday’s Roundup

Governor Chris Christie has decided not to up taxes for those who live in New Jersey and commute to work in Pennsylvania, presumably after his floated plan to do just that went down like a lead balloon in South Jersey. The Asbury Park Press reports that Christie scrapped his plans to tear up his state’s tax treaty with Pennsylvania because he has found the money he needed somewhere else…. wait for it… from cutting workers’ health benefits. Meanwhile, Philly.com says that Philadelphia developer Bart Blatstein – one of the latest crop of investors hoping to save Atlantic City from itself – has decided to lease The Playground…

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There’s Something Happening On Pauline’s Prairie

Something is happening down in Atlantic City’s Inlet neighborhood. A machine has appeared and some serious fencing has gone up around two vacant blocks. It’s not quite on the scale of the Gateway Project yet, but it looks like Boraie Development’s plan to build 250 rental units in one of Atlantic City’s most persistently development-starved neighborhoods is getting underway. Better known to some as Pauline’s Prairie or the mother ship of Atlantic City’s vacant lots, the site has been empty for 50 years. The project – dubbed The Beach at South Inlet – is set to include a gym, lounge, pool, parking, restaurants, shops and – yes – a grocery store alongside the housing units, but it has been slow to advance from initial plans laid out in 2013.

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Oyster Creek Nuclear Plant Problems and Thanksgiving Weather – Monday’s Roundup

The Oyster Creek nuclear plant shut down temporarily again this weekend. Newsworks reports that the nation’s oldest nuclear plant had a problem with its turbine control system. It’s maybe a good time to revisit this letter from NJ’s Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel which said the frequent incidents at the plant show it should close before its scheduled 2020 shutdown. Everyone is gearing up for or winding down to the Thanksgiving holiday, which is shaping up to be warmer than today, at least, although there’s a chance of a few showers. Dan Skeldon has the forecast.

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Kellie

Kellie is a mother, homeowner and casino worker. She’s also lost two young family members to gun violence. One of them was her 13-year-old son, who was murdered in 2012. Her nephew, 17, was killed this year. She has another child, 9, that she worries about.

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