Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian says Atlantic County non-casino taxpayers should be OK with a smaller share of the hated, casino-friendly PILOT bill. The good Mayor likely got un-friended and lost many Facebook followers after that statement got out.
LISTEN to Atlantic County Exec Denny Levinson. He responds on the Don Williams Radio Show. WOND 1400am.
In 2015, the Mayor signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Atlantic County Exec Denny Levinson for 13.5%. (SEE DOCUMENT BELOW)
As AC’s financial outlook sunk ever further, Guardian had a change of heart about that 13.5%. The Atlantic City Mayor now wants to offer the county just 9.92 % – that’s $4 million less per year for the county taxpayers. That’s more than $40 million less… over life of the PILOT’s 10-year term.
All of this could be a moot point. The signed document (MOU below) needed OK from City Council. That never happened. Many were miffed that Guardian went rogue and did a deal with Levinson.
County Exec Levinson says he’s got a 13.5% deal. Mayor Guardian says 9.92%. The State says: you guys battle it out among yourselves.
Levinson says the Mayor of Atlantic City misses two important points. All 22 other county municipalities were opposed to the PILOT because they believed it unfair they should bear any costs for Atlantic City’s financial mismanagement. Second, as a result of the PILOT, casino valuations are artificially low.
Atlantic County Mayors are being blackmailed by Denny Levinson, so says Mayor Guardian.
‘The Greater Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce is getting political’ says Mayor Don on the Harry Hurley Radio Show. Guardian is disappointed and downright rattled with the confusing actions of Chamber President, Joe Kelly. A frustrated Chamber membership is also scratching their heads. Why doesn’t Kelly focus more on local business, tourism and new biz dev… instead of playing politics?
Listen to the FEB 8 edition of the WPG 1450am Harry Hurley Radio Show: ‘Ask The Mayor’. LISTEN >
Borgata Atlantic City sold 50 percent ownership for $900 million, while its total assessment is $880 million
The County Exec Levinson continues: The mayor also ignores the fact that since 2008, county taxpayers will have refunded the city $65 million because of improper assessments. Although property tax refunds are not unusual, the magnitude of these are – more than 40 times higher than the county with the lowest refund and three times higher than the highest in New Jersey. This cost must be paid by non-casino taxpayers.
The PILOT, payment in lieu of taxes freezes Atlantic City casino taxes until 2026.
Atlantic County, along with the Mayors Association agreed to 13.5 percent so taxpayers wouldn’t have to pay a larger share of taxes…due to Atlantic City’s fiscal mess.
We recognized the PILOT was flawed and would negatively impact taxpayers. But the state and Atlantic City insisted it was vital. The county and municipalities gave their reluctant support only when the 13.5 percent was guaranteed.
Dennis Levinson, County Executive