ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork/CBSPhilly/AP) — The Trump Taj Mahal is poised to be the latest casino to file for bankruptcy and go out of business in Atlantic City, sources said Friday.
Sources told KYW-TV, CBS 3 Philadelphia that the Taj Mahal has already begun the process for bankruptcy, and layoff notices could go out to workers next week. As of August, the casino-hotel had more than 2,800 employees.
Gamblers were not happy to hear the news.
“This is the only place we go and it’s actually fantastic but I’m not surprised,” Taj Mahal customer Lee Meredith told KYW-TV.
“It’s catastrophic; I mean what are those families going to do?” Taj Mahal customer Judy Handzo told the station.
In August, a Deutsche Bank forecast that Atlantic City’s gambling market will shrink from 11 to 6 casinos by 2017 — with the Trump Taj Mahal joining the list of closed properties.
Stockton College gaming expert Israel Posner told KYW-TV he thinks a Taj bankruptcy is a sign Atlantic City’s future is darkened but not doomed.
“The revenue has been declining and the profitably has been declining so it’s not a surprising event. I think the remaining casinos are in reasonably good shape and really are doing reasonably well,” Posner said.
The news about the Trump Taj Mahal follows a string of other casino closure announcements in Atlantic City.
The problem is so serious that Gov. Christie will be front and center at a summit in September to determine the future of Atlantic City, which has been facing competition from New York and Pennsylvania.
“It’s not a monopoly anymore. In fact, 40-some states have gaming now so now we’re going to find a new way to go in Atlantic City,” Gov. Christie said recently.
Christie said he’d like to see Atlantic City become a resort destination much like Point Pleasant Beach down the Jersey Shore.
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