Gov. Christie signs Atlantic City rescue package

Gov. Chris Christie signed a packaged of  bills to rescue Atlantic City.

Gov. Chris Christie signed a packaged of bills to rescue Atlantic City. (5/27/16)

TRENTON - Gov. Chris Christie has signed a package of bills designed to keep financially troubled Atlantic City from running out of money.

The governor signed the bills Friday. They were approved by state lawmakers Thursday following a drawn-out political fight.

“These new laws will ultimately accomplish my mission to reform Atlantic City’s overblown municipal government, and in turn protect local and state taxpayers from being perpetually abused by the special political interests who admit to owning this city’s elected officials,” Gov. Christie said in a statement.

The statement continued, “This legislation means no more business as usual. It embraces my demand that Atlantic City immediately account for every dollar it receives and spends, and triggers a series of strict conditions and rigorous requirements the city must meet immediately.”

The governor told radio station 101.5FM on Thursday that signing the measures means Atlantic City has until Oct. 24 to get its act together. He says the state will "do what needs to be done" if the city doesn't deliver.

Atlantic City's tax base has contracted since four of its 12 casinos closed.

Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian calls the bills "huge." He says Atlantic City wants people to know the shore is open for business.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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