Addabbo puts money on full-fledged casinos in NYS
by Lisa A. Fraser
Oct 12, 2011 | 3413 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
State Senator Joseph Addabbo is calling for full-fledged casinos in New York state after a recent poll from Siena College revealed that fifty-seven percent of New Yorkers support a constitutional amendment to allow non-Indian casinos to be built in New York, while only 36 percent oppose the initiative.

The senator has noted that he intends to work towards beginning the process of legalizing full casino gaming at the soon-to-open Resorts World New York Casino in South Ozone Park.

Another poll issued by Quinnipac University revealed that 56 percent of New Yorkers support full casino gaming similar to that in Atlantic City and Las Vegas, while 37 percent oppose it.

“Rather than see the money keep going to Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indian casinos upstate, in this stagnant economy, I believe we must start the process, including public input, for the expansion of VLT racinos into full casino gaming to increase our revenues,” Addabbo said in a statement.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Governor Andrew Cuomo and, most recently, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, have all indicated their support of full gaming facilities in one way or another.

Michael Speller, president of RWNY, recently noted that his company along with the New York State Gaming Association is “very supportive of commercial gaming at the existing racetracks.”

“We think that it's a great opportunity to create tens of thousands of jobs in existing facilities, and this comes at a time when we need these jobs,” Speller told reporters recently while noting that over 35,000 people have applied for jobs at the new Aqueduct racino alone.

Addabbo wants to initiate the discussion in Albany to advance the New York State Constitutional change to allow full gaming.

That process requires the measure to be voted on by the State Legislature and once it is passed in two consecutive sessions, it is followed by a vote by the public in a referendum.

“The smart bets are that voters would want to amend the New York State Constitution and 'let the games begin,' making it a win-win situation for the economy of our state and for our people,” he said.

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