N.J. Legislature blocks Revel casino opponents

    The New Jersey legislature is moving to protect the Revel Casino from its opponents who had hoped to use a public vote to stop construction.
    But a state Senate committee has amended last year’s Economic Stimulus Act to ban any referendums that would interfere with eligible business from getting their incentives.

    Revel-Exterior4

    The New Jersey legislature is moving to protect the Revel Casino from its opponents who had hoped to use a public vote to stop construction.

    But a state Senate committee has amended last year’s Economic Stimulus Act to ban any referendums that would interfere with eligible business from getting their incentives.

    [audio:100202PGSTIM.mp3]

    The stimulus bill allows Revel to get tax incentives from the state. The company is seeking financing to complete its $2.5 billion project along the Atlantic City Boardwalk.  Senator Ray Lesniak says the Revel would produce $134 million a year in state and local revenues and create jobs

    Lesniak: This investment will create 26-hundred construction jobs and 5,500 permanent jobs at the Revel site

    But, Bob McDevitt, president of casino workers union local 54, says Revel could siphon customers from  two of the city’s older casinos and force them to shut down causing job losses.

    McDevitt: You’re talking 5,000 people if two casinos close. So there’s really not an exchange here it’s 5 in, 5 out. The 5 out, they’re not going to get hired.

    A lawyer for Revel says the new casino will attract more people to Atlantic City and the existing casinos could benefit from that.

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