Revel Casino License Can’t Be Transferred to Straub

Posted on: April 28, 2015, 02:04h. 

Last updated on: April 28, 2015, 02:04h.

Revel casino license Glenn Straub
The Revel’s casino license can’t simply be transferred over to its new ownership. (Image: Michael Ein/Press of Atlantic City)

Glenn Straub can’t seem to catch a break in Atlantic City.

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) has now said that Straub and his firm, the Polo North Country Club, cannot take ownership of the Revel’s casino license through bankruptcy court proceedings.

Instead, they say, he would need to apply for his own license before he could reopen the casino.

“No transfer or assignment of any of the licenses, authorizations, approvals and certificates sought to be assumed and assigned by the Debtors’ motion can be ordered by this court,” the DGE wrote in a filing in bankruptcy court.

That filing from the state of New Jersey came in objection to a motion by Polo North that sought to assume contracts from the Revel, including the gaming licenses that the casino held.

DGE Says Straub Must Have Authorized Employees at Revel to Watch Over Equipment

According to the DGE filing, Straub isn’t even currently authorized to house or possess the slot machines and other gaming equipment that still sits unused inside the Revel.

As soon as power is back on in the building, they say, an employee with a casino key license must be on premises at all times in order to take responsibility for that equipment.

In New Jersey, prospective casino owners must apply for licenses from the Casino Control Commission. The DGE is then responsible for investigating the potential owner, after which the commission determines whether or not the owner is suitable.

According to a DGE spokesperson, Straub has begun the process of filing materials in order to be considered for a casino license. However, that application has yet to be completed.

The licensing issue is just the latest in a string of difficulties that Straub has encountered since entering the bidding process to buy the Revel. He eventually emerged as the winner, purchasing the shuttered resort for $82 million earlier this month.

On April 9, ACR Energy Partners (the utility company that owns the power plant that supplies power to the Revel) shut off the power to the facility when Straub failed to reach an agreement on a contract for future services.

Power Agreement Reached, But Revel Unlikely to Reopen Soon

That left the building with no power, making it a fire hazard and forcing Straub to pay daily fines to the city as a result.

Last week, Straub and ACR reached an agreement that will temporarily restore power to fire detection and suppression systems in the building, with Straub paying $262,500 for two weeks of power.

The two sides also agreed to mediation in order to improve the chances of reaching a long-term agreement on providing power, heat, and water to the building.

But these issues have led to delays, and that means that the Revel may not be ready to reopen anytime soon. On Tuesday, Straub confirmed that the Revel won’t be reopening by Memorial Day, and suggested that it might not even be open anytime this summer.

Straub has blamed the delays on numerous groups that he says are sabotaging his efforts to invest in Atlantic City. Those groups include ACR and the DGE, along with a state environmental agency that wouldn’t allow him to use large generators to power the building after ACR turned the power off.

“These people just give me so many roadblocks,” Straub said.