Inspectors find extra rooms at casino resort

ATLANTIC CITY — City officials are trying to determine whether the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort made any money off 43 hotel rooms that were off the books for years.

Code inspectors found the rooms during an inspection of the hotel-casino two weeks ago. They started paperwork to put them back on the books and began checking for safety violations.

Inspectors said it appeared eight outdoor balconies did not meet safety codes.

Documents filed with the city, the Casino Control Commission and the state Department of Community Affairs indicate that the Taj Mahal has 1,250 hotel rooms. The inspectors’ find brings that number to 1,293.

“We don’t play games. We don’t cut corners,” said Gary Alston, Atlantic City’s code enforcement chief. The city recently took over safety inspections of the casino hotels from the Department of Community Affairs.

Trump officials said they did not profit from the rooms, instead using them to house visiting performers’ crews and casino employees who have fallen on hard times.

“The building operates at a loss,” Trump executive Rick Santoro told the Press of Atlantic City. “Although they’re rooms with beds, we don’t sell those rooms.”

But Arnold Orsatti Junior, Atlantic City’s mercantile director, promised that the city “will collect” fees if even one guest paid for a room.

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