In Atlantic City, NJ, owner of shuttered casino says he would house Syrian refugees
Posted by Ann Corcoran on November 4, 2015
There is money in ‘them thar’ refugees! Throughout Europe there are stories of developers and others in the real estate business who see dollar signs (well Euros, where they live) as the migrants pour in, but this is the first time we are seeing a developer here in America look to overtly cash in on federally-funded ‘humanitarianism.’
See our post last year from Germany—luxury hotel converted to housing for refugees.
Although readers, you will find many local cases of rental property owners working hand-in-glove with local resettlement agencies, or developers looking for HUD money to diversify housing in your town, it is all kept pretty under the table.
The owner of the Revel, a shuttered casino, is apparently cash-strapped and right out in the open in his appeal.
So far, the owner of Atlantic City’s former Revel casino has proposed using it as an indoor water park, a medical tourism resort, an equestrian facility and a so-called “genius academy” where the world’s top minds would tackle society’s problems.
Now add this to Glenn Straub’s thoughts for the property: housing Syrian refugees.
Straub told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he’s willing to let people displaced by the civil war in Syria stay at the 47-story Revel resort as he fights in court over its future. Straub has been trying to reopen Revel since buying it in April for $82 million but has been beset by litigation from utility companies and former tenants that has so far kept it shuttered.
“We treat our dogs better than we treat the Syrians right now,” he said. “If the government wanted to house Syrian refugees, I’d give them use of the building and let them put those people there.”
The U.S. State Department said Tuesday that it had not been contacted by Straub but would be willing to put him in contact with a local refugee resettlement agency*** should he so desire.
Straub said his only request would be reimbursement for the cost of operating the building while refugees were staying there.
***The closest resettlement agency is in Camden, NJ (go here to see the entire list of resettlement contractors, find one near where you live).
By the way, I don’t see Atlantic City on the list of cities whose mayors are hankering for more immigrants to boost their sagging economies. And, there are two NJ cities looking for Syrian refugees, but I don’t see A.C. on the list yet.
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