This is a Harry Hurley breaking news investigative report.

Following my narrative, please take the time to read all of the supporting documents, which I have included.

Rarely do you get to see how the “sausage of politics” is actually made. And, this is a beaut.

There are always winners and losers. That’s the nature of elective/appointed service.

This story involves many players at different levels of government.

Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small, Atlantic City Fire Chief & Emergency Management Director Scott Evans, Atlantic County Administrator Gerry DelRosso, Egg Harbor Township Mayor Paul Hodson, Egg Harbor Township Administrator Peter Miller, Egg Harbor Township Police Chief Michael Steinman.

Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small made a big move regarding Atlantic City's homeless population and COVID-19.

Small and Fire Chief - Emergency Management Director Scott Evans do not want and will not house Atlantic City homeless Coronavirus positive cases in Atlantic City motels, or, anywhere else in Atlantic City.

Small made it crystal clear, he wants them moved out of Atlantic City altogether.

And, amazingly, Small has won big.

My well placed sources have confirmed that Evans spoke with Egg Harbor Township Mayor Paul Hodson. Proof of this conversation is provided below.

Hodson blinked and Small and Evans rolled him. Hodson did not say no to Atlantic City homeless (COVID-19) positive cases being moved to West Atlantic City (EHT) motels.

The recent decision by the Egg Harbor Township Committee regarding short-term rentals should have closed down the motels.

Apparently, this is not the case.

Because Hodson did not say no to Small and Evans request. Hodson essentially said yes.

You can’t blame Small for making this big move.

You can blame Hodson for not saying no.

This is not theory. This is not a hypothetical. As you read this report, there are Atlantic City COVID-19 homeless in Egg Harbor Township.

Former EHT Mayor Sonny McCullough stopped this years ago with Atlantic County welfare. There are no cooking facilities in these motels, and (by ordinance) no long term rentals are permitted.

Please take the time to read all of these supporting documents. You will see exactly how Small successfully transplanted his COVID-19 Coronavirus homeless to Egg Harbor Township.

It’s one of the greatest hand-offs of ones own problems to another that you’ll ever witness.

All of our players in this investigative report acquit themselves well. Except Hodson, who still doesn’t know what hit him.

You now have a ring side seat to how all of this went down.

Cue the music. Marty Small played Hodson like a fiddle.

HERE ARE THE EXCLUSIVE INTERNAL COMMUNICATIONS OBTAINED BY HARRY HURLEY

From: Peter Miller
Sent: Friday, April 10, 2020 10:03 PM
To: Township Committee <twpcommittee@ehtgov.org>
Subject: Homeless Placement in EHT

Atlantic City and Atlantic County are using hotels along the pikes to shelter homeless and other displaced individuals. The Township is assuming no responsibility. County social services are tending to them and Sheriff Officers will provide security on the premises.

County is talking to Dr. Trocki about using the former Travel Lodge (a/k/a Red Roof Inn) for lodging.

PD will be advise as to the location of these individuals in the event EMS, Fire or Police are called.

Peter J. Miller
Township Administrator
Township of Egg Harbor

(MORE FROM PETER MILLER)

This is a follow up to the email I sent to you last night in reference to AC using WAC hotels for sheltering sick individuals who normally reside in the mission in AC. I spoke with County Administrator DelRosso this morning. On Tuesday (4/7) there was a meeting with Atantic County, Atlantic City, and other stakeholders on where to house their residents (mission & other homeless) who may become ill, not necessarily from Covid 19. It was decided that AC would house them in a hotel on Pacific Avenue (I believe it was a Rodeway). On Thursday, Scott Evans contacted Jerry DelRosso and advised him that Mayor Small didn't want them in AC and they were going to make arrangements in WAC. Mr. Evans was told that Mayor Small needed to call Mayor Hodson to obtain EHTs approval. Atlantic County through welfare would not pay the rent without EHTs consent.

On Thursday, Scott Evans called Mayor Hodson (Paul shared his conversation with me on Thursday afternoon) and in general terms said that there were no open hotels in AC and he was exploring options along the Pikes to house individuals if they had to. Mayor Hodson gave no consent or approvals. On Friday, Scott Evans contacted Chief Steinman and told him everything was cleared through Mayor Hodson and they had residents at the New Sea Breeze and Economy Inn. Chief contacted me to verify. As a result I sent you an email last night.

In my conversation this morning withJerry DelRosso he wanted to confirm that EHT had approved and consented to AC housing their population in EHT. I told him that we didn't consent and that the representation on Good Friday by Scott Evans to Chief Steinman was that this was a joint decision between Atlantic County and Atlantic City and that the Sheriffs Office was providing security 24/7. DelRosso said that was not true. He told me about the Tuesday meeting and the agreement that these individulas would be housed in AC.

I spoke with Mayor Hodson (who spoke with the Deputy Mayor) and he said he does not have the authority to approve AC plan unilaterally and he never grated Scott Evans any approval to move forward. I then called Jerry DelRosso and notified him that EHT had not granted approval to AC and that if a plan existed on Tuesday for AC to house their own residents, they should follow that plan and keep their residents in their city. I told him that EHT didnot have the resources to commit to the security of those hotels and residents. EHT would then be responsible to protect our WAC residents if anyone who is placed in any of the hotels and decides to take a walk through WAC and possible exposed other residents.

In addition, EHT would be responsible for EMS service and thereby exposing our EMTs to Covid 19. We don't need the additional exposure. Under NJ OEM regulations AC can comply a motel owner to open and take residents. They do have to pay for it, but Atlantic County will be paying the daily rent.

(MEMO FROM EHT POLICE CHIEF MICHAEL STEINMAN)

From: Michael Steinman <MSteinman@ehtpd.com>
Sent: Friday, April 10, 2020 1:29 PM
To: Peter Miller <PMiller@ehtgov.org>
Cc: Michael Hughes <MHughes@ehtpd.com>
Subject: Homeless Placement in EHT

Mr. Miller,

I received a telephone call from Scott Evans, who is the Fire Chief and Emergency Management Coordinator for Atlantic City. He advised the following:

1. Jewish Family Services placed a COVID-19 positive homeless person from Atlantic City in the Economy Inn. He advised that we, the police department should have been informed. However, neither Capt. Hughes nor I are aware and there is no known documentation.
2. A high-risk individual was place in the Hi-Ho but this person tested negative.
3. The New Sea Breeze Hotel is being considered to be used to place homeless people who have tested positive for Covid-19. He advised that the hotel would essentially be taken over for this purpose. Social Services will reportedly see to the needs of the people and either a private security company or the Sheriff’s Department will provide security. Chief Evan indicated that it would not be feasible/effective to house these individuals in Atlantic City. Therefore, motels just outside of Atlantic City are being considered. He also advised that he has discussed this with Mayor Hodson, possibly yesterday.

Evans believes that Jewish Family Services has been contracted by the county to address the homeless issue.

I wanted to make you aware. I need to know if this is going to happen so I can make the appropriate arrangements and notification to other first responders.

Thank you.

Michael Steinman
Chief of Police

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