- South Jersey Congressional Candidate Brigid Callahan Harrison is making a push for the federal government to support Atlantic City casinos during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Harrison argues that by the nature of the industry, casinos will suffer both during and after the coronavirus shutdowns will patrons being hesitant to crowed casinos for months.
- The congressional candidate also accuses President Donald Trump of playing favorites.
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. - The casino market has been hit drastically by the coronavirus shutdowns and South Jersey congressional candidate Brigid Callahan Harrison is pleading for federal support for Atlantic City casinos during this crisis.
Harrison has pushed forward a Casino and Tourism Recovery Plan that would allow casino operators to stay afloat during the fallout from the current pandemic.
Harrison believes that even following the reopening of casinos, Atlantic City will suffer as tourism will be down and regular patrons will be hesitant to go to a crowded casino.
The effects could last months according to Harrison.
Federal Support For Casinos
While many New Jersey residents have managed to continue getting in on the action with online casino gambling, the land-based operations in Atlantic City have been forced to close up shop during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Harrison’s push for federal support is so that they can continue to pay employees while also being able to prevent casinos from going bankrupt.
The Casino and Tourism Recovery Plan is created in hopes of getting casinos the same federal supplements that were awarded to the airline industry.
“Here in South Jersey, our chances of recovery are so very slim because of the nature of the industry,” said Harrison. “Even if casinos open, it’s hard to imagine crowded casino floors and people going to concerts. It’s going to be like that for six months to a year.”
Harrison is looking for unemployment benefits to be extended, for season workers to gain the federal $600 weekly unemployment checks, and for labor unions to be reimbursed for the extended welfare and health benefits.
Harrison has also been very critical of President Donald Trump, claiming the president is showing favoritism to Republican states when deciding which industries to give out benefits for.
Her argument stems from the $25 billion in federal support that the airline industry has received while the US legal gambling and tourism industry have not qualified for most federal assistance.
Harrison is pushing for these benefits but it is as of yet unknown if her proposal will be approved.