N.J. votes to designate Atlantic City tourism district

New Jersey lawmakers approved a measure to create a state-run tourism district around Atlantic City’s Boardwalk and casinos Monday.Sen. Jim Whelan said a designated tourism district will enhance the resort’s ability to attract additional investment and development. Whelan said it will also enable the Casino Redevelopment Authority to clear blighted areas.”It allows CRDA the opportunity to go out and demolish property within the tourist district that is substandard. Then they can lien the property,” Whelan said. “That becomes an incentive for the owner of that property to either fix it up or knock it down themselves.”Atlantic City Mayor Lorenzo Langford said he objects to zoning and planning functions being taken away from the city for oversight by a state authority. He said he’s also concerned city taxpayers will end up with the tab for the creation of a special police force in the tourism district.

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