All the work and none of the pay.
Police officers, fire fighters and other “essential” personnel in Atlantic City, New Jersey will be forced to work during the city’s upcoming government shutdown — without pay.
Mayor Don Guardian said on Monday that the shutdown will last from April 8 at 4:30 pm until at least May 2.
During that time, essential and non-essential employees won’t be paid their regular salaries.
The mayor’s office wouldn’t confirm that these workers would receive back pay. But local media outlets, including the Press of Atlantic City, reported that Guardian said workers would eventually be paid.
Revenue collection and public works are also considered essential departments, and those employees may also have to work. Non-essential departments will be closed. Health benefits won’t be interrupted for any employee.
“We are greatly aware of the potential impact this will have on all of our employees,” Guardian said in a statement. “We are making every effort to find solutions prior to the April 8th deadline … The City of Atlantic City is grateful for your continued service and support.”
According to the statement, the shutdown is slated to end May 2 because that’s when the city will get its next quarterly tax payments. These payments will provide much-needed relief — even if it’s only temporary.
Guardian has been unable to secure financial assistance from the state, and hinted in January that bankruptcy would be “back on the table” if things didn’t improve.
Governor Chris Christie has refused to sign bills that would provide loans to Atlantic City. Instead, he has proposed a plan for a state takeover. That bill is still pending, but Guardian has balked at the idea.
Atlantic City has been struggling for years as gambling revenue has dropped. Four of the eight casinos on the city’s famous boardwalk closed in the wake of competition from nearby states.
Police and fire unions that represent Atlantic City officials did not comment on the unpaid work.