Muni Minute: High Stakes in Atlantic City

In the latest installment of Muni Minute – The Bond Buyer's 60-second video series that examines a top municipal market story that will impact the coming week – we take a look at the debt crisis facing Atlantic City, N.J. with Gov. Chris Christie pressing the State Assembly to approve a state takeover plan when it returns to session Thursday.

COEN: The Atlantic City enters the first week of April in financial turmoil with cash flow running on empty. The state assembly returns to session this week and is being pressed by Governor Chris Christie to pass a state take over bill already approved by the state senate. This would empower New jersey's local finance board to renegotiate Atlantic City's outstanding debt and municipal contracts for up to five years.

Mayor Donald Guardian opposes this state intervention plan and recently announced plans to shut down City Hall at the close of business this Friday to avoid a default. The city which suffered four casino closures in 2014 is faced with an estimated 102 million dollar budget deficit in addition to having 247 million in debt outstanding. The gambling hub also owes 190 million to casinos in tax refunds. Atlantic City bonds are in junk territory at triple C minus by S&P and CAA1 by Moody's. I'm Andrew Coen and this has been your Muni Minute.