October 27, 2016

There’s Still A Way To Go For Atlantic City Recovery

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Someone asked me the other day whether the state will just let Atlantic City get on with things now, since the city somehow on Monday pulled the rabbit out of the hat and produced a recovery plan, as demanded by state officials and ahead of their schedule. Who knows. As Jitney Guy noted on Twitter (see below), it depends in large part on the winds in Trenton, which we know have changed, but you’d need some kind of hyperactive weather vane to have a clue what direction they’re pointing in now.

All we know is summed up in this infographic: basically, there are still a few questions. Firstly, as Amy Rosenberg noted on Tuesday, no one knows whether Borgata will come through on its commitment to consider reducing the size of the settlement it is owed from previously overpaid taxes. Secondly, no one really has a clue how the state is going to view the plan. And thirdly, even if it does all go through, it’s contingent on Atlantic City being able to issue money at better rates (and with state support) in the debt market, and that’s dependent on the winds in the financial markets. Which can change a lot in the next couple of months, with a big election and all.

The Jitney Guy made the point that this is nothing new for Atlantic City. The erstwhile Queen of Resorts has been teetering from recovery plan to recovery plan like a drunk on a bar crawl for the best part of half a century, pausing only to lose its taxpayers’ wallets in the office of some fortunate advisors every few years.


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