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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Casino Gambling and Good News in Illinois

Governor Cuomo of New York is considering the expansion of casino gambling in the State of New York.  While there would be some traditional standalone casinos in the state, it is almost certain that racinos would be given traditional table games instead of the electronic versions they already have.  That means a casino at Monticello, a casino at Yonkers Raceway and a casino at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Cumo's rationale?  It’s time for the state to “come to grips” with commercial casinos and gaming because there’s already extensive and lucrative gambling in the state and in neighboring states.

Words that New Jersey Governor and the legislature should realize.  How many more New Jerseyans are going to head into New York once regular casino gambling is approved?  Another reason NOT to go to Atlantic City.  By all means, you want to try making Atlantic City a destination location for gambling, be my guest, but don't screw the New Jersey taxpayers who will have to pay more taxes for education as New Jersey residents head over the border and subsidize New York taxpayers' education costs.

Governor Christie tried grabbing business from Illinois because they decided to raise taxes there to settle their budget problems and he saw an opportunity.  It won't be long before Governor Cuomo tries to recruit business from New Jersey because the state is throwing revenue away which will translate into higher taxes.  If this resistance to casino gambling in Northern New Jersey continues, they will have to change the license plates in New Jersey so instead of saying "The Garden State", the plates would say "The State Run by Idiots".

Good news in Illinois.  The long, long awaited funds from the casinos which were owed to the racetracks in Illinois have finally been released thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court denying the Illinios Casino Industry's appeal.  As a result thoroughbred and harness tracks in Illinois will share in a $141 million windfall to be split between track operators and horse owners in the form of higher purses.  In addition, with the latest casino opening, the racetracks will be due 15% of the revenue annually. 

In the meanwhile, Illinois horsemen should expect to see their purse levels rise soon.  How high remains to be seen, but after years of cutting purses, any increase would be appreciated.

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