EDITORIAL: Best shot to fulfill Atlantic City turnaround is next couple of years The Press of Atlantic City Editorial Board · April 22, 2021 at 9:00 pm The gaming industry in Atlantic City is rightly focused on returning to normal as soon as possible. The forced closure of casinos last year for 3½ months cut their operating profits by 80% and threw tens of thousands of employees out of work. The gaming companies in the city did better than might be expected during the pandemic, though, because in New Jersey they have a growing two-part stream of revenue from online operations. While revenue from in-person visitors fell by 43% from the year before, that from sports betting and casino-style gambling online doubled. At the beginning of last year, New Jersey and its gaming company partners already had a big head start over other states into online betting. That turned out to be extra rewarding during a pandemic that shifted many activities toward online and away from in person. New Jersey leaders past and current shouldn’t lose much time congratulating themselves for their foresight. The return of investment in the city under its state management was tripped up by the pandemic and hasn’t rebounded yet. State and city officials need to realize the fleeting nature of their online gambling advantage and quickly get the reinvention of Atlantic City back on track.