The Revel Casino’s new owner Glenn Straub may have a way out of being required to have a gaming license to reopen his new TEN casino.
In New Jersey, it seems being involved in the gambling industry is complicated. The area of Atlantic City is the only place in which land based gaming can take place and the city has been struggling for some time. The area has lost five gaming venues since 2014 and continues to see less than stellar tourism numbers. The goal now is to see new operators come in and make changes to allow Atlantic City to thrive once again. Glenn Straub rescued the Revel Casino after bankruptcy was filed and the casino shut down but reopening a new venue has not been particularly easy for the new owner.
Straub purchased the Revel Casino for a steal and took some time to try and decide what he would do with the property. In the end, he revamped the facility and decided to rebrand under the name TEN. The property would include a hotel, dining as well as casino gaming once again. However, Straub did not have a gaming license and felt that he did not need one due to the fact that he would not be running the gaming aspect of the property. Thusly, a fight ensued with Straub and legislators as lawmakers require licensing and want Straub to pay up in order for TEN to begin offering gaming.
Straub was told by regulators that he must have a gaming license if he wants to reopen TEN with a casino component in place. Straub has stated that he is simply the landlord and the outside firm that will be managing the gaming operations for the venue should be in charge of licensing. Now it seems a solution may have been found for the businessman.
Enter Senator Ray Lesniak
Senator Ray Lesniak of New Jersey has proposed legislation S3001 to try and help out Straub in this scenario. The bill would allow owners of hotels in Atlantic City with the right to lease a portion of their property to a casino owner under certain circumstances. Speaking with the Press of Atlantic City, Lesniak stated that it makes no sense to have a landlord go through the lengthy review process of a casino operator and have this aspect stand in the way of the business opening and creating activity as well as employment in the region.
It is unclear as to if Lesniak’s bill will move forward but if it does, then Straub would have his out and be able to open TEN without having to purchase a gaming license himself.
Straub is not the only businessman fighting an uphill battle to operate a business in Atlantic City. Carl Icahn has been fighting with legislators as well as the local union due to the closing of the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. Icahn was facing a big problem with a bill on the table to impose a five year gaming license suspension on a casino owner who shuts down a venue after January of last year, but this bill was vetoed by Chris Christie this week.
Now, we will have to wait and see what the outcome of Lesniak’s bill will be and if Straub will catch a break to be able to open TEN and offer hotel accommodations as well as gaming to the struggling area of Atlantic City. Some type of compromise will have to be met in order for both lawmakers and Straub to be happy with the outcome.