LICENSE TO STEAL

 

 

    Getting a license to deal in an Atlantic City casino was a difficult process.  It was unlike Nevada, where all the applicant had to do was show up at some place, produce identification, and pay a seven dollar fee.  New Jersey developed a much more different process which had only the strongest willed people following through with it.

    The first step was filling out a 30 page form asking very personal questions about every aspect of my life from its beginning to the time of application.  After answering all the questions, providing a photograph and fingerprints, and paying a $25 notary fee, a fee of $275 had to be turned over to the Casino Control Commission (CCC).

    Next was the waiting game.  The CCC would do a background investigation and get back to the applicant within six months to a year.  I was to be out of school at the end of March, but would be lucky if I was even working that year.  I didn't mind the process though; because I knew it was to insure that no organized crime figures were getting into the business and the last thing I wanted was to be working for a bunch of gangsters.  I was proud of the system New Jersey had for keeping such elements out--even though it was a bit of a pain in the ass.

    There were many types of licenses one could obtain to work in Atlantic City casino industry.  In order to be licensed to work a lower level position on the casino floor you had to fill out the form that I was given and pay the high price.  By that I not only mean the money, but signing the last page of the application.  Basically, it stated that we were signing away all our constitutional rights guaranteed by the United States government. This gave the CCC absolute power over us.  If they wanted to enter our homes and search them for any reason, they claimed that right and did not need a warrant.  As much as it hurt me to sign away my rights, I knew I could not get a job if I didn't.  So like every other sap in the business, I did it. (The CCC has never exercised that right openly.   I do not believe they ever would.  I had heard that it was being challenged in court, but I never found out the results.)

    The license I was seeking is what was known as a two-one gaming license.  This was where a 21 followed your license number.  (Wasn't that cute, 21.)  Mine was 51543-21.  The two-one gaming license was what everybody needed to work on the casino floor, no matter if they were dealing or just sweeping cigarette butts off it.  People who already had such a license and wanted to add a game to it would pay a $60 upgrade fee, fill out a small form, and provide the CCC with the school's certificate.  That fee was above what they had already spent on the initial price paid for obtaining their first license.  Those were people like the three Playboy security guards I heard talking my first day of casino school.  But for those like myself, we had to write down on the initial application what game we wanted to be licensed for.  In my case it was craps.

    Simply filling out the application was not enough to obtain a craps license.  I had to prove to the CCC that I was competent to deal the game. You see, unlike Nevada, one had to show they had the ability to deal the game in which they wanted to be licensed at.  If one had experience dealing the game either from a Nevada, ship, or other casino, all they had to do was provide the CCC with an affidavit of hours worked and fill out the monster application.  They still had to pay for the investigation.  If one had no such experience than they had to produce the school certificate.  In either case, this license enabled us to work anywhere in the hotel or casino.  I know no reason why they did this, but I surmise that it was because the state wanted the person dealing to know what they were doing so the game wasn't slowed down.  If that were to be, less money could be made.  In Nevada, even though they had schools, one did not have to go to it to get a license or a job.  They could either show the casino they knew how to deal the game or sometimes there was on the job training available.  If you were like me, however, the process of getting the ability was a slow and costly one.

    The final requirement for obtaining a dealer's license (for us non-experienced people) was completing the required instruction and getting the certificate.  Once I had that, I had to rush it over to the CCC office located at Tennessee Ave. and the Boardwalk.  They then put it with the license application.  After the investigation was completed it went before the board for a vote.  If the certificate was not there and a game had been specified on the application, the license was denied.  If it was there and one had been recommended for licensing, they would get the votes needed.  And that was only if you were not married to anyone in the CCC, that was another one of their rules.  The Casino Control Commission would then send out a card informing the applicant that their request was granted.  Once you had taken that card to the CCC office and picked up your license, could you begin to look for work.

    The total was going to run $1,250, but I knew I would make that back in the first two or three weeks of working.  That first day of school they told us how much casino dealers made and how easy it was to advance to a higher paying management position.  Ambition filled my mind.

 
 
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Back to cover

 

 

Dedication

Behind These Eyes

Chapter  1 - OVERTURE

Chapter  2 - IN THE BEGINNING

Chapter  3 - MY FIRST SHOT

Chapter  4 - CHAD AND THE DEALER

Chapter  5 - THE DECISION TO DEAL

Chapter  6 - LICENSE TO STEAL

Chapter  7 - CASINO SCHOOL

Chapter  8 - SPRING '84

Chapter  9 - GETTING IN--THE AUDITION

Chapter 10 - BREAKING IN

Chapter 11 - LEARNING THE BIZ

Chapter 12 - SHOOTING DICE: THE HOOK

Chapter 13 - THE CITY, THE CASINOS, AND THE MOB

Chapter 14 - THE MOVE TO GET OUT

Chapter 15 - FIRED BY THE MAFIA

Chapter 16 - ALONG COMES MARY

Chapter 17 - THE TROP

Chapter 18 - OUTSIDE THE BIZ

Chapter 19 - BACK IN THE BIZ--ANOTHER AUDITION

Chapter 20 - THE BIRTH OF NICOLE

Chapter 21 - TRUMP: THE ART OF THE STEAL

Chapter 22 - PREVIEWS OF THINGS TO COME

Chapter 23 - THE BREAK-UP

Chapter 24 - THE NUT HOUSE

Chapter 25 - RECOVERY

Chapter 26 - PARENTAL ALIENATION

Chapter 27 - FIRED FROM TRUMP

Chapter 28 - I FIGHT FOR NICOLE

Chapter 29 - THE RUN-A-ROUND

Chapter 30 - THROWING IN THE TOWEL

Chapter 31 - WHAT NOW

GLOSSARY