NewJersey Online: On the final day of his Shore Tour yesterday, Gov. Chris Christie got a quick look at how the state’s $250 million was being spent in Atlantic City.
Standing 114 feet above the Atlantic Ocean in what will be the "sky garden" of Atlantic City’s soon-to-be newest hotel and casino, Christie said the state’s investment into the stalled Revel project — as well as its pledge to help revitalize the city — is starting to bear fruit.
"This administration has a big investment in it and we’re starting to see the fruits of that investment all across Atlantic City. Make no mistake about it, Atlantic City is very important to New Jersey’s future," Christie said.
Christie’s three-day whirlwind Shore Tour, which ended in Ocean City yesterday, included no announcements of new initiatives or programs, but gave him much face time with the public.
At Revel, which is expected to open May 15, Christie walked a path lined by construction workers who he said would not have jobs had it not been for the state’s partnership with Revel’s executives to get the stalled $2.4 billion project restarted. Christie in February announced the state’s $250 million investment in Revel in return for a 20 percent share of the revenues.
Absent from the entourage of politicians standing beside Christie was Atlantic City Mayor Lorenzo Langford, who has lambasted Christie’s plan to have the state run a district carved out of the city’s casino and entertainment areas.
Christie, who was accompanied by his daughter Bridget, later told reporters he and Langford will work out their differences.
In Ocean City, Christie’s appearance was more of a meet-and-greet for tourists on the boardwalk.
Lori Hartley, a social worker from Mount Laurel, asked Christie what policy beliefs make him a Republican. He gave her the short answer: less government, less regulation and fewer taxes. Those policies, Hartley said out of his earshot, are hurting the lower class.
"I believe there needs to be a safety net. That safety net is being dismantled," Hartley said after talking to Christie. "It’s alarming what’s happening with the lower class. I have an issue with the millionaires not paying their fair share."
Connie Blood, a former New Jerseyan who moved to Williamsburg, Va., three decades ago, said she thinks Christie is "great" and urged her 9-year-old grandson Ricky Wynne of Virginia Beach to meet him.
She told her grandson: "He might be president some day."