USA State government to take over Atlantic City's finances By Danny King / January 29, 2016 Share 1 -- The state of New Jersey will enact a plan to oversee Atlantic City’s municipal finances in the wake of a five-year period when falling visitor numbers and casinos closures have resulted in plunging city revenue and growing debt. Gov. Chris Christie said that the state would expand the authority of its Division of Local Government Services and Local Finance Board to help rein in the city’s expenses and address its growing deficit. Among other areas of control, the state will have authority to restructure the city’s debt, amend or terminate city contracts and consolidate city departments.The state will have authority to wield such control for as long as the next five years.“Atlantic City’s municipal finances are now the greatest threat to the city’s wellbeing, and to eliminate the remaining forecasted deficits and to bring its budget into structural balance means making tough choices for everybody,” Christie said in public remarks this week.The city's property tax base has fallen 65% and debt has surged 50% from five years ago. Financial difficulties largely stem from the growth of the gaming industry in other mid-Atlantic states, particularly Pennsylvania. In 2012, Pennsylvania overtook New Jersey as the U.S. state second only to Nevada in gaming revenue. New York and Maryland also have grown their share of the pie.Four Atlantic City hotel-casinos closed in 2014: the 1,898-room Revel, the 1,300-room Showboat, the 906-room Trump Plaza and the 506-room Atlantic Club. Last year, Atlantic City casinos took in $2.41 billion in revenue, down 27% from the $3.3 billion the city’s dozen casinos took in five years earlier, according to the state’s division of gaming enforcement.