A.C. Fights Back, Lucy Loses A Friend and Our Crumbling Infrastructure in Today’s Route Forty Roundup – BETA
The Press of A.C. reports on the widespread opposition across Atlantic County to Steve Sweeny’s takeover plan. Marty Small said the plan robbed the city of its “sovereignty” noting no municipality in the country faced the problems Atlantic City had, while Mayor Don Guardian challenged the narrative the city was at war with the state, saying he and his colleagues were voted to be “diplomats.”
Moody’s said the plan to expand casino gambling would be “bad news” forAtlantic City and cause more casinos to close there, NJ.com reports. Because it’s helpful to have the banker perspective on every issue. Meanwhile, city gambling revenue has been cut in half since 2006, Politico reports (subscription). Rebecca Forand reports on the “swanky” Mullica Hill house Rowan University bought for its president, supplying many photos of the $975,000 spread, which, spoiler, resembles a bog-standard McMansion outfitted to the tastes of Marshal Tito. Meanwhile Rutgers is asking the state for $98.5 million.
Max Pizarro did like a ten-minute interview with Jeff Van Drew at a fundraiser in Pittsgrove and is that Ron Jaworski behind him waving the beer around? I’m not sure what Van Drew said, though at one point he relayed the riveting anecdote of a friend who still insisted on calling him, Senator Van Drew, Jeff, despite the dizzying heights to which he, Jeff, had risen in local politics recently. “That’s what this country was based upon–real people who really came from, in some sense, the working-sector, whether it was in a profession, whether it was in any field…,” he said, etc. Nothing quite says Real America to me like a Michelob Ultra wrapped in the cocktail napkin they insist on giving you with your beer at fancy-ass fundraisers. JVD also said one of his proudest accomplishments was fighting for people in his district who had medically necessary procedures that weren’t covered under their insurance–not by expanding access to healthcare on principle, but by calling the president of the health insurance company to intervene.
We had a storm! Some trees were down, reportedly. Gnats were plentiful this morning, there’s a raccoon on the Atlantic City Boardwalk, an opossum in Chelsea, deer in Venice Park, and a horse was spotted walking down the Atlantic City Expressway Monday afternoon.
I hate to sound too biblical, but is Mother Earth trying to tell us something?
Lots of different ways to report the SCOTUS ruling that will allow sports betting in New Jersey, and elsewhere. Here’s one with the words “game changer” in the headline. Here’s one from Reuters. Here’s a thoughtful one from Matt Friedman. Here’s the obligatory will-it-save-Atlantic City one.
It’s easy to forget we have lots of amazing bird species in Atlantic County, especially if you don’t get out to the Forsythe very often or are perennially distractable like I am. Have you seen my car keys? What is this typer thing doing here. Oh the Press of AC has a cool story about the World Series of Birding, coming to town this Saturday. Dateline: WOODBINE.
Nicole Leonard at the Press of AC has a depressing and informative and amazing story on the opioid epidemic through the lens of EMTs and “responder fatigue” that sometimes comes with saving the same people over and over again. “For some, it’s become a calling. For others, the frustrating, heart-wrenching cycle of emergency calls for overdoses has caused a type of fatigue that is hard to come back from.” Amy Rosenberg’s story on Mayor Gilliam’s State of the City address contains the interesting nugget that only one member of the City Council attended the big luncheon, “a sign of the contentious and complicated local political scene.” Sheesh.
Got a bike that’s suffering from rust because of the tough Absecon Island climate? We spoke to the owner of AAAA Bike Shop in Ventnor, Mike Wiesen, about how to protect your bike from rust or clean up an already-rusty one. Also – read Nanette LoBiondo of Downbeach Pilot on AAAA Bike Shop’s 40th anniversary.
Phil Murphy did an interview with The Record and NorthJersey.com where he was asked about pardoning marijuana offenders, given his efforts to legalize recreational marijuana.
Under a few current proposals, offenders would be able to petition to have prior convictions expunged, but it costs money to hire a lawyer, pay court fees and take the time to go to court. In California, a few district attorneys have been working to automatically expunge or downgrade offenses–within their jurisdictions.
Vincent Jackson has a cool story about what might happen to the summer economy if employers couldn’t get enough student visas for workers. “With the anti-immigration rhetoric coming out of Washington, D.C., there had been concern over possible change to or limits on the J-1 student work and travel visa program.” Legal Cannabis
The influential Tom Moran of the Star-Ledger said marijuana will be legalized in New Jersey, it’s just those crafty politicians in Trenton are risk-averse and right now it’s safer to let the other guy take responsibility. Vikings Softball
The Atlantic City Vikings softball team could become a factor in the Cape Atlantic League under new coach Anthony Nistico, who’s stockpiling talent, Glory Days’ Dave O’Sullivan writes. Elsewhere, Margate’s Glenn Klotz says the new drainage pipes on the beach are a “developing emergency.”
If any sheet-metal workers, ironworkers or teamsters out there were considering giving money to a Phil Murphy Super PAC they should definitely not because it was established to push “Governor Murphy’s Agenda” and “can and undoubtedly will be used” to hurt the feelings of Senate President Steve Sweeney, etc., according to a letter from our current favorite CRDA board member William Mullen. (h/t to the Playbook)
“All we do is Build,” they say. When they’re not f*&#$-ing around in Trenton I guess. Elsewhere in my god are we in high school, the NJEA said it would review member conduct after Project Veritas (last seen trying to set up The Washington Post by selling it fake Roy Moore accusers) entrapped union officials into “discussing how they use questionable means to defend teachers accused of wrongdoing” (NJ 101.5’s words). Meanwhile back on planet earth, “New Jersey’s public school system continues to be among the most segregated in the nation.”