Bill Expands Gambling

06.18.13 | Abby Lutcher

The revised bill would authorize video slot machine centers in New York CIty's outer boroughs and as many as three or four places upstate ... opening competition to gambling operators beyond race tracks.Tioga Downs owner Jeff Gural says that's a killer for his racino. Governor Cuomo admits that getting public approval to allow Las Vegas type casinos would be difficult. His proposal calls for anyone wishing to build a casino to pay a 50-million dollar upfront licensing fee -- and 25 percent of the casino's profits would go to the state. Gural agrees that the state needs more jobs ... but worries that Cuomo is overlooking already existing options. "We have a big advantage. We can be up and running much quicker than any new casinos. We need to get credit for that. And I don't think people even want some casinos around. By having them at racetracks, there's no issue with location." Again, the provision would only come into play if voters strike down building more casinos. The bill is still in negotiations. It could be voted on in the coming week, before the 2013 legislative session is scheduled to end.