Did Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa just win another tax battle?

Days after the state enacted a law that exempts casinos from paying property taxes, Boyd Entertainment sold its 50 percent stake of Borgata to MGM Resorts for $900 million. The May 31 sale — a real-market indicator of the company’s value — suggests it’s worth $1.8 billion. Borgata’s property is currently assessed at $850 million.

The timing of the sale prevents the deal from having any impact on what Borgata pays under the new law. Instead, a three-piece formula using gaming revenue, hotel rooms and property size will determine what each casino pays in lieu of property taxes.

NJ Chris Brown

Brown blasted the PILOT for more than a year and argued it should’ve accounted for all revenue streams — not just GGR — including food, drinks and entertainment.

“It’s clear the fair-market value of the Borgata is a billion dollars more than it’s currently being assessed, justifying why I fought party bosses and special interests and proving the point I made two years ago: The PILOT‘s a sweetheart deal for the casinos,” Brown said.

The $900 million deal reflects the business value of the Borgata casino and not just the value of the property.

Still, a tax court judge slashed Borgata’s assessment from $2.2 billion to $880 million in 2013 when he ruled the assessments failed to reflect the contraction of the Atlantic City gambling market.