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New Jersey casino foes have new ads

The campaign against the measure to build two new casinos in North Jersey is rolling out four new ads, even as polling shows the ballot question is unlikely to pass.  On Monday, the lobbying group Trenton's Bad Bet released the new TV and radio ads against the proposal. which will be on the November general ballot. 






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Pennsylvania Court says part of slots tax a violation

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the municipal portion of tax on slot machines outside Philadelphia violates the state constitution because it effectively imposes different rates on casinos depending on their size.  Nearly $50 million is at stake.  The court gave the General Assembly four months to fix the 2004 law that legalized casinos.


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Harrah's to renovate 450 rooms

One of the city's top casinos is getting a $30 million makeover.  Harrah's is redoing 450 rooms and suites in the Bayview Tower,  The work will begin in mid-November and is to be finished by memorial day weekend 2017.  It is part of a race among Atlantic City's most successful casinos to remain competitive by reinvesting in their properties.  Parent company Caesars Entertainment is spending $200 million on projects at Harrah's, including the recently opened Waterfront Conference Center, and planned improvements to the Pool After Dark, its fitness center and food court. 


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Revel/TEN takes steps toward reopening


Glenn Straub won a rare concession from the state Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA), which recently removed a disputed condition and approved an amended site plan for the former $2 billion Revel, newly re-branded as "TEN".  The CRDA board approved the site plan without one condition its land-use division had recommended: that Straub pay about $100,000 in back assessment to the state's Atlantic Special Improvement District.

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Revel to get rebranding, a new team

Glenn Straub took a giant step away from the failed Revel brand recently, as a management team announced a total re-branding of the casino hotel Straub bought out of bankruptcy.  The team is calling it TEN, as in "the TEN brand symbolizes perseverance" - which Straub arguably has shown, and continues to need, in trying to get still-outstanding approvals from city and state agencies.  The new group, which includes Revel's original chief financial officer, is aiming to reopen the property by march 2017.


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Sugar House starts online gaming

The majority owner of Sugar House Casino has launched an online gambling site in New Jersey.  Rush Street Interactive, a unit of Chicago-based Rush Street Gaming, will operate the site under the internet gaming permit of Golden Nugget Atlantic City LLC.  


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North Jersey casino taxes still unclear

​New Jersey voters are being promised that millions of dollars in new funding will flow to programs for senior citizens and the horse racing industry and to help a struggling Atlantic City - if only they approve a ballot question authorizing two new casinos in the northern part of the state, near New York.  But what they're not being told is what tax rate the new casinos would pay - and exactly how much new money would be available.


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Taj formally requests approval to shut down

Billionaire Carl Icahn's management team is asking state gambling regulators for permission to shut down the Trump Taj Mahal casino hotel next month,  The team has filed a formal petition with the Division of Gaming Enforcement also seeking approval of plans to wind down table games, disconnect slot machines, store unused liquor, and destroy cards, dice, and gambling chips.  The billionaire says the Taj Mahal is losing millions of dollars a month while the city's main casino workers' union carries out a strike against it.   


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Calls for landscaping plan roils Revel owner

Glenn Straub, owner of the former $2 billion Revel casino hotel, angrily left a Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) hearing recently after being asked for a landscaping plan. Straub, whose attorneys had submitted a new traffic-circulation plan for the shuttered casino that was being well received, then said he wanted to withdraw his application for a site plan that would allow him to reopen the property. 


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Happy Labor Day!


On behalf of Casino Nights Live! I wish everyone a Happy Labor Day!

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Rockin' the Ritz.....again!

Casino Nights Live! hosted yet another casino event at the Ritz Carlton Hotel.  Guests were treated to a lavish sit down dinner, followed by music, provided by a DJ from Then Be My Guest Entertainment.  The dice flew and the roulette balls spun as players tried their luck at Craps, Blackjack, Roulette, and Texas Hold'em Poker.  Three lucky guests won valuable prizes.  Everyone had a great time!


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Federal court says still no N.J. sports betting

Sports betting fans in New Jersey may have finally run out of luck.  A federal appeals court on Tuesday rejected the state's attempt to legalize sports betting for the third time in three years.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, ruling in Philadelphia, said that the state's initiative to legalize sports betting at casinos and race tracks, an effort to revitalize the faltering casino industry, breached the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act which banned sports betting in all but a handful of states.  


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Claridge to become Radisson

Atlantic City's Claridge Hotel will become a Radisson-branded property in early October, according to Carlson Rezifor Hotel Group.  No further details were available.  The Claridge's current owner acquired the Claridge in 2014 and have made improvements to the property that include the addition of a rooftop bar and new conference rooms.  Is it possible the old Claridge "Hi Ho Casino" could rise from the ashes and reemerge?


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Trump Taj Mahal to close

The Trump Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City will close after Labor Day weekend, in part because of a workers' strike.  About 1,000 workers from Local 54 have been striking since July 1st after negotiations fell apart over health and pensions benefits.  Local 54 members include bellhops, cooks, and housekeeping.  About 3,000 workers would lose their jobs in the closure. 








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Boyd completes Borgata sale

Boyd Gaming has completed the sale of its half-ownership of Atlantic City's Borgata casino to MGM Resorts International.  Nevada-based Boyd says it received $589 million from Monday's transaction, after deducting its share of Borgata's currently outstanding debt. That amount does not include Boyd Gaming's 50 percent share of any future property tax settlement benefits.  The Borgata, Atlantic City's top casino, estimates it is due property tax refunds totaling $160 million.  MGM now owns all of the Borgata, which has dominated the Atlantic City market sine shortly after it opened in 2003. 


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Casinos not interested in later serving hours

Pennsylvania lawmakers recently passed legislation to allow the state's 12 casinos to sell liquor between 2 A.M.and 6 A.M., but casinos say they aren't interested.  That is partly because the cash-strapped state wants $1 million per license.  Several casinos have said it was not worth hiring staff to serve sparse late-night crowds.


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Casino Nights Live! hosts fund raiser

Casino Nights Live! hosted a fund raiser Thursday night at a local Harley Davidson dealership.  The event was a benefit for the B+ Foundation whose mission is to battle childhood cancer.  The dice flew and the roulette ball spun while the guests were treated to music by a live band, as well as some tasty food and an open bar.  Everyone had a great time, and some money was raised for a wonderful cause!


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Hundreds of protesters surround Taj Mahal

With a strike against the Trump Taj Mahal casino about to enter its fourth week and no end in sight, Atlantic City's main casino workers union turned up the heat Thursday, surrounding the massive gambling hall with hundreds of picketers, some traveling hundreds of miles to support the walkout.  Local 54 of the Unite Here union held a rally and march around the casino with a crowd it predicted would reach 1,000 people.  Pickets from unions in Baltimore, Washington, New Haven, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and New York were among the protesters.  The union walked off the job on July 1.  The Taj Mahal casino remains open.  


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Union refuses Taj Mahal health insurance offer

A casino owned by billionaire Carl Icahn withdrew an offer to restore health insurance for its striking workers Monday after the union refused to put the measure up for a vote 18 days into a walkout. The Trump Taj Mahal had given striking Local 54 of Unite Here until Monday to vote on its offer.  About 1,000 union members from the Taj Mahal's food and beverage and housekeeping departments went on strike July 1 after the union was unable to agree on a contract that restored health care and pension benefits that a bankruptcy judge terminated in 2014.  Dealers and security are not included in the walkout, and the Taj Mahal remains open. 
 


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Boyd purchase receives regulatory approval

MGM Resorts International's purchase of Boyd Gaming's 50 percent stake in Atlantic City's top casino has received regulator approval in New Jersey.  The Casino Control Commission on Wednesday voted 3-0 to approve lease agreements needed for the sale that will give MGM full control of the property


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