New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo recently signed legislation called “The Upstate New York Gaming Economic Development Act of 2013” that will allow four Las Vegas-style casinos to be built in the Empire State. The plan will go to vote in November.
“For too many years, gaming revenue has left New York for our neighboring states,” Cuomo said, according to media outlets. “Today, we are putting New York in a position to have those dollars spent here in our communities, which will benefit our local economies and tourism industries, as well as support education and property tax relief.”
The state currently has about 10 tribal casinos operating independently and some casinos attached to race-tracks, but full-scale Las Vegas-style casinos would be much different than these.
For years, the biggest casino developers have wanted to gain access into New York City due to the potential for huge profits and these same developers are against the plan of opening up casinos in Upstate New York arguing that a a casino in New York City would be better for creating economic activity and more jobs.
The three regions of New York where casinos could be built are the Hudson Valley/Catskill area, the Capital District/Saratoga area and the Central-Southern Tier. The decision on locations will come from state gaming regulators, who will also be in charge of overseeing the industry once it’s underway and bringing in taxes for the state.
Some of New York’s neighbouring states are already reaping the rewards from offering gambling and expanding. New Jersey and Massachusetts are in the process of greatly expanding their respective gambling industries with Internet gambling and land-based venues. Delaware is also about to venture into the real-money online gambling and New Hampshire is also working on a land-based casino plan. Pennsylvania has become the second busiest casino state in the US.
For Canadians from Ontario and Quebec mostly who drive down to Atlantic City to play in American style casinos and benefit from comp programs this could be a much closer proposition depending on the casino offering.