by Lisa Grimaldi | July 28, 2010

New Jersey governor Chris Christie has backed a report by the state’s Gaming, Sports and Entertainment Advisory Commission that, among other initiatives, recommends the creation of a new state-operated tourism district (including gaming resorts and the Atlantic City Convention Center) in Atlantic City. The report recommended the new body, which would focus on enticing new businesses to build both gaming and nongaming attractions in the city, be launched by July 2011. One of the group’s main goals, according to the commission, is to increase the meeting and convention business in the Atlantic City market by at least 30 percent per year for the next five years. During a press conference last week, Governor Christie said that the Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority, which currently markets the destination and convention center, would be “folded into” the Atlantic City Tourism District. In a statement issued in the aftermath of the governor’s announcements, a spokesperson for the ACCVA said, “We look forward to working with Governor Christie and his team to define and develop our role in this extraordinary partnership.”