New York Governor Has No Plans for Gambling Expansion

New York Governor Has No Plans for Gambling Expansion

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that he is opposed to expanding gambling operations at the two downstate racinos, Empire City Casino and Resorts World New York City.

Racinos face problems

The two racinos in the downstate region are only permitted to provide video lottery terminals to their patrons. These terminals resemble slot machines. They can also offer electronic table games to the patrons. The racinos have offered the state hundreds of millions in incremental tax revenues to receive full-fledged casino licenses. However, the governor doesn’t seem interested in the idea.

New York Governor Has No Plans for Gambling Expansion

On Monday, he said,

“These are complicated issues, and I am skeptical about quick, knee-jerk reactions to doing something like that, especially if it’s conditioned on the money.”

Note that the state is already facing budget shortfalls and tax revenue from two new casinos could help them recover. The 2013 gaming law of the state doesn’t permit new casino licenses in the state before 2023. This is because four upstate commercial casinos were provided full-scale licenses alongside a 10-year exclusivity clause that could help them build their gambling business.

Companies want in on the casinos

Several operators and gambling companies are drooling over the chance of receiving new gaming licenses in the New York City area. Some of the largest companies in the business are spending extensively on lobbying efforts to ensure that the casino moratorium is lifted in the state.

MGM Resorts, which owns the Empire City racino, and Genting Group, which owns the Resorts World NYC, are prominent names in this list. MGM spent a whopping $850 million on buying the Empire City property from the Rooney family. Both MGM and Genting have pledged to spend over $100 million to the four upstate casinos if they are permitted to use dealer table games and slot machines at their properties. They said,

“The New York City gaming market is a tremendous opportunity to generate hundreds of millions of dollars of incremental tax revenue that could be used to support local schools and revitalize the MTA.”

Las Vegas Sands is also keeping its options open in the region. It is lobbying for a full-scale license in the five boroughs area for establishing a casino resort. The three companies suggest that they could be harnessing over $500 million from the region in just one year if the license ban is lifted.

The companies suggest that allowing new full-scale casinos will help in preserving tax dollar outflows from the state.

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