TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — New Jersey Governor Chris Christie wasted little time, approving a two bill package that saves Atlantic City from potential bankruptcy.
Christie’s signature came just one day after the legislature passed a compromise that gives Atlantic City predictable casino tax revenue, paired with a 60 million dollar secured bridge loan. They have until late October to develop a 5 year financial plan that has to meet specific goals. Otherwise, the state takes over.READ MORE: Temple University Student Samuel Sean Collington Killed In Off-Campus Shooting In North Philadelphia
Mayor Don Guardian told KYW Newsradio he was not surprised by the quick action. “I had understood as early as Monday that he was in agreement with it,” Guardian said. “He was giving us the time to formulate the plan to bring our budget in balance by 2017.”
The mayor also understands his administration is under the gun, so to speak, but will be able to meet the 150 day deadline to develop a plan acceptable to the state Department of Community Affairs, which will monitor compliance. “Absolutely. I’ve understood it from the beginning. I think that it’s a time frame that we have to meet,” Guardian said.READ MORE: Philadelphia City Council Set To Hold Hearing Over SEPTA Safety Concerns Monday
Christie’s office issued a two page press release announcing his decision. In it, he stressed that if the terms of the accord are not met, “my administration will be empowered to immediately step in and do the job for them.”
And if there is any doubt about the Governor’s resolve, this statement makes his feelings clear.MORE NEWS: Philadelphia Police: Homeowner Shoots Intruder Inside Holmesburg Home
“For Atlantic City officials, the final countdown starts today.”