City & State: Heard Around Town, April 3

Written by Chris Bragg on . Posted in Politics.

* With crowds flocking to Queens to play slots at the recently opened Resorts World New York casino, gambling activity at the nearby in has dropped off slightly. But Tim Rooney, Jr., ’s general counsel, noted that while novelty and convenience were diverting some customers, a competing casino was always going to be part of the equation. “We’re confident that the market is sizeable enough for both of us to be successful here,” he said. “We figured that the total impact would be somewhere between 10 and 15 percent at the end of the day, and it’s actually on the lower end of that right now.” But if a constitutional amendment legalizing full-fledged casinos paves the way for a third – or even a fourth – casino in the New York City area? “Between the two of us next year, we’ll pay the state close to $800 million just in terms of our taxes to the state education fund,” Rooney said. “We’re not quite sure if a third entrant, depending on their tax rate, increases that or just cannibalizes the existing businesses here. It’s a big concern.”

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