A good friend with ties to local and Atlantic County government brought an issue to my attention yesterday regarding the late Arnold Orsatti, Sr.

Orsatti, Sr. died on October 14, 2003. He led a very consequential life.

His son, Arnold Orsatti, Jr. was a former influential member of Atlantic City Council. He died on Easter Sunday, 2008.

On Arbor Day, 2000, Orsatti, Sr. was recognized with a “Marker” (pictured above) to honor his lifetime of community service to Atlantic City.

I knew both Orsatti’s. Orsatti, Sr. verbally took me on many years ago at an Atlantic City Rotary Club meeting, when I was the invited guest speaker.

To be honest, it was both epic and unprecedented, because the very mission statement of Rotary is opposite of Orsatti’s unprovoked, aggressive, verbal attacks.

No one had ever witnessed anything like this at Atlantic City Rotary, before or since.

However, I never took it personally, because Orsatti, Sr. did it out of his great, unconditional loyalty and friendship to then Atlantic City Mayor Jim Whelan.

This is the kind of man that Orsatti, Sr. was. He was a fiercely loyal friend. I respect that. Mayor Whelan and I were going through a period of significant disagreement and Orsatti, Sr. defended his friend robustly.

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Orsatti, Sr. operated for many years two well-known restaurants in Atlantic City, The Warwick on Raleigh Avenue and Orsatti's on South North Carolina Avenue.

They we’re iconic dining spots, whereby all of the connected politicians, media and other newsmakers frequented.

OK, here’s the issue.

The County of Atlantic and The City of Atlantic City own land directly adjacent to one another in Atlantic City at 1333 Atlantic Avenue.

The Orsatti, Sr. Arbor Day “Marker” currently sits on County-owned land.

We’ve been advised that long-standing concrete barricades are being removed and that there may be the need to move the Orsatti, Sr. “Marker” … possibly even to Northfield on County-owned land.

Orsatti, Sr. is an Atlantic City legend.

His “Marker” should remain in Atlantic City and not be moved off shore.

In a spirit of doing the right thing, I am respectfully asking Atlantic County Executive Dennis Levinson, Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small and Atlantic City Council President George Tibbitt to get together … find a way to keep the Orsatti, Sr. “Marker” in Atlantic City where it belongs.

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