Factbox: Atlantic City: the good and bad for a city at a crossroads

Wed Jan 27, 2016 10:55am EST
 
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ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (Reuters) - Atlantic City, New Jersey's distressed gambling hub, is at a crossroads. Angry local officials said that with more time and state help, seeds planted over the last couple of years will start to bear fruit. State politicians, however, say those same local officials have not gone far enough with the turnaround plan and the city should be taken over.

The city has huge challenges but also positive developments. Here, the good and the bad. For the full story, click

THE GOOD:

*Reduced city staffing by 25 percent to 946 in 2015. School district reduced budget by $20 million and 200 employees.

*With increased state aid, 2015 budget closed a $101 million deficit without new property tax hikes after two years of steep increases. City budget cut $14 million in 2015. Additional $16 million cuts expected in 2016.

*Crime dropped 9.3 percent in 2015 through November, compared to the same period the year before. Federal prosecutors, working with county, state and local cooperation, also disabled a major heroin dealing gang.

*Under new police chief, Henry White, civilian complaints against officers fell 82 percent since 2013 to 45 in 2015.

*New projects include the Playground, a retail and entertainment complex by Philadelphia developer Bart Blatstein, who also bought the former Showboat casino earlier this month. The Waterfront Conference Center at Harrah's Resort Atlantic City opened.   Continued...