The outspoken Straub had many words for the commission. He maintains the plans to re-open the Atlantic City property later this month on Feb. 20.
Why does the hotelier need a NJ casino license?
When TEN reopens it will actually only be a hotel with retail, bars, and restaurants. There will not be any gambling, nor was that ever part of Straub’s plan.
The disagreement between Straub and gaming regulators is whether or not he needs to obtain a casino license if he intends to lease the gaming space to someone else. Straub and the TEN staff contend he does not need one because the business plan for the property is to lease the space to other operators.
“We would turn the Casino Control Act on its head if we permitted this applicant to avoid licensure,” Matthew Levinson, chairman of the commission, told Philly.com.
Straub had plenty of words for the press following the hearing.
“Some government [agency] backing another government [agency’s] decision, what do you expect? You think one policeman’s going to overrule another policeman? No,” Straub said to North Jersey.com.
Straub plans to challenge in court
Even though the proposed opening date is less than three weeks away, Straub says the matter will go to court before the opening date:
“There’s going to be a [filing?] from the Circuit Court way before that time period. It’s all the employees that – the 3,000 people who were down there before [working at Revel, presumably].
We’ve already gone through all the applications, we’ve already interviewed a lot of them. We know which ones to hire for what departments we’re going to have. So we’ll see what the state government is going to defend itself against in the court of law.”
Straub is the only person who seems confident TEN can meet its opening deadline.
“The opening of this facility for casino operations is not even remotely imminent at this time,” New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement Director David Rebuck said to Philly.com.
Straub has a history of missing his promised deadlines when it comes to Revel nee TEN. Since he purchased the $2 billion property for pennies on the dollar, he has been assuring a reopening is just around the corner.
His original opening date was supposed to be the summer of 2015.
Straub also has a history of being outspoken, and some might say outlandish opinions and ideas when it comes to the New Jersey casino. He is not a casino operator by trade. He made his money working in airport real estate and shopping malls.
When Straub first purchased Revel, he had lofty ideas for it to be everything from an academy for geniuses to a medical healing spa to an elaborate ropes course and water park. To date, none of these ideas have come to fruition.
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