Atlantic City, New Jersey – Jobs
Rising out of the surf, Atlantic City shines with a newfound luster. More than thirty years after legalizing gambling, the city has seen economic gains and revitalization of its downtown core.
Construction projects were numerous while the economy prospered, tourists came in greater numbers, and surrounding communities saw their populations grow.
Atlantic City has always been primarily a resort town. Its location in southern New Jersey, hugging the Atlantic Ocean between marshlands and islands, presented itself as prime real estate for developers. The city was incorporated in 1854, the same year in which train service began, linking this remote parcel of land with the more populated, urban centers of New York and Philadelphia. Resort hotels soon appeared along the water’s edge and city dwellers came in droves to escape the summer heat.
In 1870 the first boardwalk was built along a portion of the beach to help hotel owners keep sand out of their lobbies. The idea caught on, and the boardwalk was expanded and modified several times in the following years. Today, it is several miles long and sixty feet wide, reinforced with steel and concrete.
As the city grew, so, too, the attractions, amusements, and entertainment options. The first amusement pier opened in 1882, jutting several hundred feet out into the ocean and offering carnival rides and saltwater taffy. Animal acts, bizarre novelty shows, and beauty pageants were common on the boardwalk and the piers as well. During the first half of the twentieth century, Atlantic City reigned as one of the premier destinations in the country for vacationers. Many famous people visited and entertained, adding to Atlantic City’s reputation as an exciting and prestigious resort town. But shortly after World War II, with the advent of public air transportation, tourism declined. Commercial flights took people to new destinations. The sideshows and carnival atmosphere that personified Atlantic City no longer appealed to the vacationers of the 1950s. By the late 1960s Atlantic City was a shell of its former self. Employers fled and neighborhoods deteriorated. Without tourism, the city could not sustain itself.
Realizing that a new attraction was desperately needed, the city, along with the state legislature, moved to legalize gambling in 1976, with the first casino opening in 1978. It wasn’t long after that the skyline began to change as new highrises, luxury hotels, and casinos sprung up along the boardwalk. Today, twelve casinos employ close to 50,000 workers, with capital investments reaching $2 billion, attracting over 30 million visitors annually. And after years of sluggish revenues (which many attribute to the highly regulatory climate created by the Casino Control Commission, the governing body for Atlantic City casinos), the area now seems to have hit its mark.
The legal framework that allows gambling within Atlantic City is very restrictive.
Gambling is only permitted in a casino, not hotel lobbies, restaurants, or any other retail establishments. Furthermore, to receive a license to operate a casino, an owner must provide at least “500 sleeping rooms” of certain sizes. In the past absolutely all personnel employed in either the casino or its adjoining hotel – regardless of their positions and work duties – had to be licensed by the Casino Control Commission, which can be expensive. (A three-year casino floor employee license costs around $300.) Currently this policy is under review by lawmakers and possibly could be changed to allow licensing exemptions for non-casino employees. The casinos are all open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. You must be at least 21 to gamble and to work on the casino floor.
In addition to the casino action found in town, the area has numerous other attractions. If you are into the beach scene, this is the place to be. Over four miles of sand and surf soothe the soul. Nearby you’ll find the E. B. Forsythe Wildlife Refuge and Absecon Lighthouse. And of course, there’s the world-famous boardwalk with its shops, restaurants, and rolling chairs.
Location: Atlantic City encompasses 11.94 square miles, running 3.9 miles in length. It rests on Absecon Island in Atlantic County. It is approximately 60 miles southeast of Philadelphia and 100 miles south of New York.
Average summer temperature: 76° F
Average winter temperature: 40° F
Phone Numbers of Note
Chamber of Commerce: (609) 345-2251
Atlantic City Convention and Visitors Authority: (609) 348-7100
New Jersey Department of Labor Job Services: (609) 441-3294
State of New Jersey Casino Control Commission: (609) 441-3422
Newspapers and/or relocation publications: Star-Ledger, (201) 877-4141; Atlantic City Press, (609) 272-7000; Atlantic City Magazine, (609) 272-7900
- Econo Lodge – 609) 344-9093
- Budget Lodge – (609) 652-1333
- Caprice Motor Lodge – (609) 652-3322
- Highlander Motor Inn – (609) 652-3344
- Pleasantville Campgrounds – (800) 258-2609
- Atlantic City Blueberry Hill Campground – (800) 732-2036
Air service: Atlantic City International Airport, (609) 645-7895
Bus service: Greyhound, (609) 344-7550
Rail service: Amtrak, (800) USA-RAIL
Public transit: New Jersey Transit, (800) 582-5946