Dog & Pony Show, Geek Amusement Park, Dollar Store Layoffs – Friday’s Roundup

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Dog & Pony Show
Wayne Parry’s Associated Press piece does a nice job of contrasting the fanfare and showbusiness of Gov. Christie’s Atlantic City visit yesterday with the somewhat harsher realities of the state takeover that were presented at a follow-on press conference by the president of the NAACP and others. Meanwhile, the Press has a look at the possibility of a lawsuit over the PILOT payments the county was shorted on (and Christie’s response), and The Inquirer’s Amy Rosenberg writes about Christie’s – possibly – softening stance on selling the water authority. It was a busy day.

Picture of Hammonton’s town clock via @memorieslostintime on Instagram.

Geek Amusement Park
Bill Barlow, writing for Newsworks, got some more insight into developer Bart Blatstein’s plans for The Showboat, after he announced the launch of weekly mini-conventions dubbed the Atlantic City Fan Expo. It all hinges around professional sports gaming – but there will be some live music thrown in too, for fans of the former House of Blues. “We have the opportunity to create a geek amusement park; a three-ring circus for geeks and millennials,” said millennial Shawn Smith, who’s working on the project.

Dollar Store Layoffs
I’m not even sure what kind of a bellwether it is for the local economy when a dollar store is closing, but that’s what’s happening. The Press reports that Dollar Express is closing stores in Brigantine, Vineland and Pleasantville which means 24 local jobs will be lost.

Remember when it was cold and snowing and a video of a homeless guy called Alex who lives behind an Atlantic City gas station went viral? Eric Fischetti of Atlantic City Crust has been able to use money raised from the #AlexforPresidentAC campaign to help Alex stay in hotel room, as well as get him food and clothes. Here’s an update, via Cat Country.

In the rest of the news from the last 24 hours, Ocean County has smog problems, according to this report, which also says that Atlantic, Cape May and the rest of South Jersey have OK air conditions, an investigation into stolen electricity helped police uncover a marijuana farm in an Egg Harbor Township house, and LoBiondo says EPA cuts are not OK with him. All that and more below:

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