Monday, May 4, 2015

POSTED: Wednesday, April 29, 2015, 9:05 AM
Revel ground floor service entrance shows lights on after power was restored to the defunct casino. (Photo: Amy S. Rosenberg / Staff)

UPDATE: Power was restored into the Revel property shortly after 11 a.m., Wednesday but the building engineer said it would be a gradual process to actually turn on power throughout the building. 

The 47-story tower that once was the $2.4 billion Revel Casino was powerless for 20 days, in a dispute between new owner Glenn Straub and the energy company built to power the 6.2 million square foot property.

Timothy Lowry, attorney for ACR Energy Partners said Wednesday the company's agreement to turn on the power was the result of a short-term deal orchestrated by U.S. District Judge Jerome Simandle that has Straub paying $262,500 for two weeks of power. It had shut off power April 9, two days after Straub bought the property out of bankruptcy.

POSTED: Monday, April 27, 2015, 1:05 PM

    Kevyn Orr, the bankruptcy attorney whose Detroit credentials set off alarm bells on Wall Street when he was appointed to Atlantic City by Gov. Christie as part of an emergency management team, is leaving the post, the governor's office said Monday.

    In a statement, Christie spokesman Brian T. Murray said: "From the start, it was made clear that Kevyn Orr would lend his expertise as a short-term consultant to Kevin Lavin, who continues to lead all efforts to review and improve the operations, finances and culture of Atlantic City's government to bring long-term stability to the resort town. Kevyn Orr will finalize his work by the end of the month, as the emergency management team continues its efforts to stabilize the city's finances and releases its next assessment report in June."

POSTED: Thursday, April 16, 2015, 2:12 PM
The Revel sits in darkness on the Atlantic City, N.J. Boardwalk as lights from the city illuminate the fog on April 9, 2015. ( AP Photo / The Press of Atlantic City, Ben Fogletto )

UPDATE: ACR Attorney Tim Lowry said at 5 p.m. that the parties had been negotiating all day to forge an agreement between the power company and Glenn Straub's Polo North Country Club, new owner of Revel. "We're taking a break, going back to our clients, and we'll reconvene at 9 p.m. tonight."

Asked if that constituted progress, Lowry answered, "Trying very hard."

EARLIER: 

POSTED: Wednesday, April 15, 2015, 2:25 PM
Mobile generators are parked along Metropolitan Avenue across from Revel in Atlantic City. (Photo: Amy Rosenberg)

UPDATE: Up in Camden, where U.S. District Judge Jerome Simandle was attempting to mediate between attorneys for new Revel owner Glenn Straub and ACR Energy, Straub said he would be undeterred by the state's concerns over the generators. He said he would be willing to pay a $3,000 daily fine to the state Department of Environmental Protection for using polluting generators that violate federal air quality standards, at least for the time being. 

(The $3,000 fine is less than the $5,000 fine currently being imposed on him by the city because the powerless Revel is considered a fire hazard.)

EARLIER: 

POSTED: Monday, April 13, 2015, 4:22 PM
Tall, dark and empty: The Revel Casino Hotel after ACR Energy turned off its power Thursday. ACR lacks a deal with new owner Glenn Straub. (MIKE MANGER / For the Inquirer)

UPDATE: As promised, Glenn Straub's rented mobile generators arrived outside powerless Revel on South Metropolitan Ave. on a rainy Tuesday morning, but were not being hooked up as of Tuesday afternoon. 

The city continued levying $5,000 a day fines against Straub, who bought Revel for $82 million a week ago and had the power shut off two days later, but a neighbor on Metropolitan Ave. attempted to be a bit more hospitable.

POSTED: Thursday, April 9, 2015, 10:00 AM
Tara Lordi, representing Glenn Straub on site at the former Revel property says they've ordered backup generators. (Photo: Amy Rosenberg / Staff)

UPDATE:  Acting Fire Chief Vincent Granese said the powerless 6.2 million square foot building represented a safety hazard without fire suppression and prevention systems working. "We can't fight a fire in this building safely," he said, standing outside the building after speaking with Straub's engineer. 

Chris Filiciello, the chief of staff to A.C. Mayor Don Guardian, said the city would begin fining Straub daily until the power was restored. He said Straub is attempting to get backup generators. Another issue is that the red light at the top of the building is also off, which could be an issue for the F.A.A.

Granese said the building's backup generators were also controlled by ACR Energy.

POSTED: Wednesday, April 1, 2015, 1:09 PM
Artist's rendering of part of the interior of Bart Blatstein's proposed "Playground" complex in Atlantic City.

At a fancy press conference at the Pier Shops in Atlantic City, Philadelphia developer Bart Blatstein declared his feud with Caesars president Kevin Ortzman over and unveiled his $50 million plans for "Playground:" a pier filled with music and bars that will spill out to the deck around the pier and the beach. 

Blatstein said he had settled his dispute over the ownership of the Pier with Ortzman, who had previuosly referred to Blatstein as a "rogue occupier" of the Pier in a lawsuit. Ortzman, with a public relations person doing blocking for him, declined to answer any questions about his recent role in Atlantic City. Caesars has closed Showboat, sued Blatstein and complicated Stockton's takeover of Showboat.

Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian was all jokes, despite the dire state of his city, saying "Kevin Ortzman, are you here? Bart Blatstein wants to make sure you don't evict us."

POSTED: Tuesday, March 31, 2015, 3:19 PM

The Christie administration extended the term of a $40 million loan to Atlantic City that was due Tuesday, a move that was expected because the city’s highly-publicized financial woes have locked it out of the capital markets.

Atlantic City now has until the end of June to repay the money borrowed in December to help the city pay its bills following a steep decline in property-tax revenues caused by casinos’ successful appeals for lower assessments.

Kevin Lavin, Atlantic City’s emergency manager appointed by Gov. Chistie in January, said last week that by June he expected  to have detailed proposals on how to close Atlantic City’s projected $101 million budget gap for this year. In addition, the projected deficit for the Atlantic City School District is $47.1 million.

About this blog

Inquirer staff writer Amy S. Rosenberg has covered Philly police, city neighborhoods, Ed Rendell as mayor, the Jersey shore, Atlantic City, Miss America and the psychology of Eagles fans. She moved to Ventnor on July 3, 1995, which makes her a local, but not really.

Inquirer Staff Writer Jacqueline L. Urgo has spent every summer of her life at the Jersey Shore, and has lived there year-round for nearly 30 years, even fulfilling one of her bucket list dreams by once living in a house by the sea.

Since 1990, she has covered the waterfront for The Inquirer — from the Atlantic to the Delaware Bay shore — and some of the mainland in between. Along the way, she amassed an encyclopedic knowledge of this tear-it-down-and-build-it-back-up region, delving into the history and the hype of a place with a lot of unexpected stories to tell.

Amy S. Rosenberg
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