To deal with ongoing fiscal problems Atlantic City, N.J.'s government is seeking state aid.
The city government will be seeking $30 million in transitional aid for the current fiscal year. New Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian is proposing flat spending and a steady tax rate in the not yet approved budget for the current fiscal year, said Michael Stinson, Atlantic City's director of revenue and finance. These proposals will depend on getting state aid, he said.
The city's fiscal year is the same as the calendar year. It has not yet adopted a budget for the current fiscal year.
Currently the city is running on continuing resolutions based on last year's budget.
With the decline of the city's gambling industry in recent years has come a decline in government revenues. In late October Moody's Investors Service said that a court decision that awarded the equivalent of 20% of Atlantic City's annual revenues to the Borgata Casino was a credit negative for the city.
On Nov. 20 Moody's downgraded Atlantic City's general obligation and city-guaranteed debt to Baa2 from Baa1, affecting $219 million in debt, and retained a negative outlook.
Guardian assumed office earlier this month. He plans to present the "mayor's budget" to the city council on Feb. 7, Stinson said. The city will not know if the state will approve the aid until at least April 7.
Since 2010 the state has had some supervision over Atlantic City government. Stinson said that if the city were to accept the aid, the state would increase its supervision over the city.
The city does not expect to adopt a budget until sometime between late May and late June, Stinson said.
Guardian told the Philadelphia Inquirer that he plans to make $10 million in budget cuts each year for the next three years.
The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs will make the decision about granting the aid. The department did not have an immediate comment.