Hard Rock Atlantic City Fined by State Regulators

One of New Jersey's newest residents is already breaking the rules. The state Division of Gaming Enforcement fined Hard Rock International this month for failing to comply with licensing guidelines. The casino operator neglected to apply for a license for one of its new executives.

All in the same month, Hard Rock Atlantic City applied for two casino licenses for two new executives. Somehow it forgot to obtain a license for a third. The casino was fined $5,000 for hiring marketing executive Mann Lien without filing a formal petition with state regulators.

Under state law, casinos must submit all new executive hires to be vetted by the Casino Control Commission. Lien was hired back in July, but Hard Rock neglected to notify the state commission until October 22. Hard Rock then requested a waiver but was denied.

Hard Rock could not claim it did not know the rules. Hard Rock Atlantic City opened at the end of June in the former Trump Taj Mahal. In that time the casino has submitted all of its other executives to the Casino Control Commission for vetting. The casino's new president, Joe Lupo, as well as its new senior vice president of Marketing, Jeffrey Hook, both received gaming licenses and residency waivers in October.

The fact that the operator overlooked a single executive is suspect. Lien was hired as the casino's vice president of Asian Marketing. A representative for Hard Rock said the new executive hires are part of a “shake-up” at the four-month-old-casino but did not provide the reason why its first president, Matt Harkness, was replaced.

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