Recognizing the profound and devastating economic consequences for their legislative district, Senator Christopher J. Connors, Assemblyman Brian E. Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne C. Gove voted against legislation paving the way for north Jersey casinos.
Connors, Rumpf & Gove say that residents should prepare to defeat a ballot question that would allow casinos outside of Atlantic City. (Flickr)
Following through on their pledge to constituents, each member of the 9th District delegation vehemently opposed and voted ‘NO’ on companion legislation SCR-1 and ACR-1, which proposes amending the State Constitution to permit the establishment of casinos in two other counties located at least 72 miles from Atlantic City.
Despite the delegation’s ‘NO’ votes, both SCR-1 and ACR-1 were passed by both the State Senate and General Assembly on March 14 of this year. Subsequently, a statewide ballot question will be presented to the voters for the 2016 November General Election to decide if the State Constitution will be amended to allow casinos outside of Atlantic City.
Connors, Rumpf and Gove issued the following statement:
“Atlantic County residents and, all of South Jersey for that matter, should be infuriated and alarmed that Trenton broke its commitment to south Jersey and Atlantic City.
“Residents and business owners should prepare to do all that’s necessary to defeat the ballot question when it’s placed before the voters this November. There is too much at stake for residents faced with the prospect of property tax increases and reduced property values from the likely regional economic fallout.
“Saturating the casino market and setting the stage for north Jersey casinos to cannibalize Atlantic City casinos has all the makings of failed government policy dictated by politics rather than sound economics. It’s become all too obvious that powerful special interests have both a financial and political stake in opening casinos in the northern part of the state.
“Now, only the voters can stop north Jersey casinos, with south Jersey needing to lead the way.”
In September of 2014, Connors, Rumpf and Gove started an online petition to provide a forum for residents to take a more active role in protecting the Atlantic City gaming industry against the approval of north Jersey casinos. Hundreds of residents have already signed the delegation’s petition which is still active.