There is talk about a proposal to dock a three story floating casino boat off Atlantic Highlands that could hold more than 300 passengers that would cruise past the 3-mile municipal and state limit to permit riders to gamble and drink.
The upside is the potential to create 65 to 100 new jobs, the harbor could potentially earn $45,000 a year in docking fees, the casino owners would purchase fuel locally, the food they would offer passengers would be prepared by On The Deck, which is located at the harbor, and there would be residual traffic to other local businesses.
There are estimations of six months to a year before any decision is made one way or another.
Personally I think its a good thing.
Parallels between Atlantic Highlands and Atlantic City seem unfounded. Before legalized gambling was approved in AC, it was wrought with the economic and social problems common to many urban centers in the 1960’s & 1970’s, with an economy entirely dependent on tourists who shunned the decaying resort, the city reached its lowest point.
So the conclusion, that gambling and casinos brought AC down isn’t true. It was already a dump. Although, casinos helped the waterfront, if you went two blocks away from the water, AC remained a dump. On the contrary, AH isn’t a dump and is not infected with economic and social problems, so adding a casino boat, if we truly parallel to AC, will perhaps change the waterfront but 2 blocks away won’t change at all.