A Democratic freeholder candidate is calling for his county to be considered as the potential site of a new casino in North Jersey. Mitchell Horn, who is running for a seat on the Morris County freeholder board, plans to vote in favor of a constitutional amendment to expand casino gaming outside of Atlantic City and believes the county would be well positioned to draw in gamblers.
Though discussions surrounding the two new casinos have centered around Jersey City and the Meadowlands, the locations will not be decided until after voters weigh on a ballot question this November.
Public support for Democratic-sponsored constitutional amendment has been tepid so far, with a June Monmouth University poll finding 48 percent in favor and 48 percent opposed. Proponents in the legislature argue the new casinos will make up for Atlantic City’s losses to out-of-state competition in the last decade.
“Morris County could benefit from the development of a casino here,” read a statement from Horn’s campaign. “A casino would provide an increase in revenue to the county, which could be used to reduce property taxes. In addition, the development would be a huge boost to the local economy in terms of jobs and tourism. Local businesses in the transportation and restaurant industries would also benefit from this.
“The proposed location of the casino would be easily accessible from Interstate 80, which would minimize the traffic impact on county residents. The location is also ideal for North Jersey casino enthusiasts because they won’t have to travel long distances to either Atlantic City or Pennsylvania.”
Horn, of Montville, is hoping to crack the Republican freeholder board in November. Democrats have not won a county office in more than thirty years. The sitting freeholders did, however, break a three-year strek of preventing county tax hikes this year when residents’ tax levy increase 2.39 percent.
Horn will be joined on the ballot by Rozella Clyde of Chatham and John Van Achen of Parsippany, who also secured the party line before clearing the county primary last month.