As public officials weighed in Tuesday about the news that Revel Casino Hotel will close next month, Atlantic City's mayor lamented the action taken by the resort's board of directors, since prospective buyers had surfaced last week.
“We are disappointed in the decision that the board of Revel has made, as there appeared to be several bidders for the property,” Mayor Don Guardian said in a prepared statement. “While I am not privy to the current facts that led to this decision, I do know this process is a complex one compounded by an extremely short time frame and cash flow challenges.”
The owners of the struggling casino announced Tuesday it will close Sept. 10, even though it will continue to search for a buyer until then. Ahead of a bankruptcy auction scheduled for Thursday, Revel failed to attract any “qualified” bids — only three submissions from bidders whose financial viability had to be reviewed.
That prompted a meeting Monday at which board members would decide how to proceed, but the result was a formal announcement that the 2-year-old, $2.4 billion gaming hall would “wind down” its operations.
That will mean the loss of more than 3,200 jobs, an impact highlighted by public officials even as they tried to remain optimistic.
“This might be Revel's last chapter, but not the last one for this building,” Guardian said. “My administration remains committed to the workers, the businesses and the visitors who are impacted by today’s news.”
Assemblyman Vincent Mazzeo (D-Northfield) issued a separate statement Tuesday that lamented the blow to the region’s economy:
“We live in troubling economic times, but as a community we will endure,” Mazzeo said. “Atlantic City is in a transition period. We know it won't happen overnight, but we will get there. It look Las Vegas over 10 years to transition to a destination resort and now they're beating the odds.
“Atlantic City has so much potential, and we'll strive to maximize it,” he said. “Tough economic choices lie ahead, but we'll face them together, and together we'll work to bring Atlantic City back to being the premiere East Coast destination that it once was.”
Meantime, Assemblyman Chris Brown (R-Linwood) put the onus on state officials.
“The state needs to bring stability back to the Atlantic City market by reaffirming its commitment to giving Atlantic City the time it needs to transition into a destination resort and reassuring investors there is a profitable future in Atlantic City," he said in his own statement.
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