Friday, April 18, 2014 • 6:10 AM Comments (40)

MGM Requests Delay on Casino Award

posted by Maureen Turner

What to make of MGM’s effort to slow down the awarding of the casino license the company has been working—and spending—so hard to obtain?

Earlier this week, Michael Mathis, head of MGM’s proposal for the South End, asked the Mass. Gaming Commission to hold off on awarding the western Mass. casino license that company is all but assured to win. Mathis cited the uncertainty created by a potential ballot question this fall to overturn the law that legalized casinos in the state.

The MGC had been expected to make its decision on the Springfield proposal by June—before the likely resolution of a Supreme Judicial Court case that will determine whether the question will, indeed, go on the ballot. Apparently, MGM doesn’t want to gamble—yes, I said it—on losing any more money on its proposed $800 million project if there’s a chance the entire casino enterprise could be scrapped. The awarding of the license would trigger an $85 million fee from MGM to the state, among other costs.

Casino opponents see MGM’s request a promising sign that the casino company is getting cold feet. Yesterday, John Ribeiro, chair of Repeal the Casino Deal, the group behind the proposed ballot questions, released a statement calling the casino company’s request “yet another sign that the casino industry is acutely aware that the Massachusetts landscape for casinos has shifted and the bubble of inevitability has long-ago burst. Smart leaders like former Boston Mayor Tom Menino are now saying the repeal effort, once we get to the ballot, will succeed and clearly MGM doesn’t have much faith in its legal case.

“The $85 million application fee isn’t much to a company which earned nearly $1 billion off the backs of its customers last year but it is telling that our grassroots movement has made them blink about this bad bet,” Ribeiro continued.

Meanwhile, Springfield officials, who are relying heavily on a casino to be an economic savior for the city, find themselves scrambling to do some damage control. In today’s Republican, Kevin Kennedy, City Hall’s chief of development, tells reporter Pete Goonan that City Hall doesn’t see the request “as a setback. … [b]ecause there is already existing uncertainty as it relates to the ballot question … and what the Supreme Judicial Court will rule.”

Goonan’s article continued: “The city, however, has had discussions and will continue to have discussions with MGM ‘as to their obligations to the city based on the host community agreement.’ [Kennedy] declined specific comment on MGM’s obligations, but said they are spelled out in the agreement between the city and MGM.”

Springfield isn’t the only place feeling some significant casino-related turmoil. Boston Mayor Marty Walsh has called on MGC Chairman Stephen Crosby to recuse himself on voting on a Boston-area casino, saying he has demonstrated bias against the city. And Walsh’s predecessor, Tom Menino, recently predicted in an interview on a Boston news station that if the repeal question makes it to the ballot, it will pass. “"It's a political quagmire. It's a mess. ... I think the public is off this casino,” he said. “Nothing good can come out of this. It's too much nonsense, too much conversation, too many questions about who's involved and how it's going to happen. People get tired of that after a while and say, 'Let's go onto the next issue.' I really believe that if it goes on the ballot, it'll lose."

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There will be no repeal. Highly unlikely this will go on the ballot. John Ribeiro for all his bluster and propaganda is not very bright in regards to legal issues. Casino applicants have a legal implied contract and constitutional right of the full expectation of the resort casino licensing process to reach its full conclusion. There is no mechanism in the gaming law for monetary redress and reimbursement of the tens of millions of dollars and fees that have been put up by the casino companies in the licensing process. That in itself constitutes an unconstitutional seizure without the ability to have the licensing process completed. The very fact that the licensing and completion of the licensing process for several of the licenses will now not be completed until AFTER a potential ballot question and referendum would take place makes the case for unconstitutional seizure that much stronger. Neither Repeal The Casino Deal nor a complicit water carrying media - in search of a continuing anti-casino saga - has the ability to see how delayed licensing - that has been forced on the Ma. Gaming Commission - actually works in favor of the ballot question not making it out of the high court. As for Menino, it is simply sour grapes. Most recent polling shows that the citizens of Massachusetts still favor the casino law by over a 2-1 margin. There is zero momentum to repeal the law and it is a caricature that has been created by a media frenzy of bad reporting and despicable water carrying media all to willing to take at face value a pathetically hypocritical anti-casino movement that has stooped to new lows and slander daily to advance their agenda of reactionary zealotry, puritanism, and outright lies in this process.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 14:38
On a separate note...the most recent "legal brief" filed by a consortium of anti-casino groups in the state is a laughable embarrassment. It is nothing more than a series of cherry picked propaganda and biased opinion pieces strung together that have ZERO legal standing or influence in how the high court will rule. To even file such a piece of trash as an actual legal brief that would have ANY legal standing with the Massachusetts Supreme Court is laughable beyond words. Repeal The Casino Deal has jumped the shark and lost all touch with the legal realities of such a case. It would be shocking at this point if a ruling doesn't come quickly in this case striking this from going on the ballot. One does not even need the most minimal of legal knowledge and expertise to see this not going on the ballot at all.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 14:58
Also while there is some free time to spare tonight. Let's see if John Ribeiro and Kathleen Norbut and friends can deal with some facts. For the longest time citizens have heard the anti-casino meme of casino hospitality jobs are all minimum wage jobs that nobody could possible want. Let's examine that claim in depth with some examples from around the country that puts that folly of an outright lie to rest.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:35 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snip) 1,000 people show up to casino job fair This weekend is the start of the Grand Falls Casino Resort job fair. The job fair is being held until 5 p.m. Sunday at the Hilton Garden Inn in Sioux Falls which is north of the Louise exit on I-229. Organizers say people were lined up outside before the job fair started. They were expecting about 500 people but more than 1,000 people showed up. The casino is hiring for various positions.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:37 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (Snips) Thousands try their luck at casino job fair in Rosemont--------- 'We've already exceeded 3,000 applications on that website. Obviously, after (today) that's going to go up tremendously. It's going fantastic, the flow is nice, the quality of people is wonderful.' Des Plaines Mayor Marty Moylan urged unemployed city residents to apply. 'If we didn't have a casino, we wouldn't have this opportunity,' he said. 'By the turnout here, obviously jobs is the number one issue.' The $445 million Rivers Casino will house 1,200 gambling positions and several restaurants and bars on about 20 acres off Des Plaines River Road between Touhy and Devon avenues. It is expected to generate millions in annual gambling tax revenues for the state, city and area communities. Moylan said between the casino and Rosemont's development of a 200,000-square-foot entertainment district off the Tri-State Tollway, residents throughout the region will benefit.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:39 (Snips) Job seekers see potential in South Florida's gambling industry.------ Nearly 4,000 job applicants stood in line for hours, a few all night, to interview Wednesday for one of 800 new jobs at the expanding Seminole Casino Coconut Creek. The casino, which could only interview about half the job seekers who attended the job fair on Wednesday, gave interview appointments through Tuesday to those in line. Altogether, the Seminoles employ more than 10,000 workers at seven Florida casinos, including about 1,000 current employees at the Seminole Coconut Creek.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:45 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips) ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - Its a big week for thousands of New Mexicans looking for jobs as two businesses have more than 700 new jobs to fill and they're going all out to hire people. While thousands of jobs have been lost in New Mexico during the recession, a big bump in new work has hit the Albuquerque area all being showcased with huge job fairs this week. Thousands of people showed up at one of those job fairs on Monday at Albuquerques new Downs Racetrack and Casino. The venue hosted day one of its two day job fair on Monday to long lines of people with high hopes. The Downs is hiring a long list of positions.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:46 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips) Thousands Line Up To Cash In On Casino Jobs-------- Indiana Live! Job Fair Draws Lines Of People--------- Thousands of Hoosiers lined up outside a casino on Friday to try their luck not at the tables, but at hitting the jackpot with a new job. Organizers were looking to fill 350 positions at the new Indiana Live! Casino, but more than double that number showed up for Friday's job fair, lining up out the door and down the street to get an interview, 6News' Sarah Cornell reported. General Manager Mark Hemmerele said with so many people looking for work, attitude might trump experience.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:48
Construction jobs projected-estimated breakdown for Massachusetts Casinos. Hourly-Annual. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Construction/Extraction $24.60 - $51,000----------- Supervisors/Managers $33.04 - $68,720------------Stonemasons $24.70 - $51,370--------------- Carpenters $24.25 - $50,440-------------- Tile and Marble Setters $26.14 - $54,370------------- Cement Masons and Concrete Finishers $22.77 - $47,370----------- Construction Laberors $20.72 - $43,090------------------ Paving, Surfacing, and Tamping-------------- Equipment Operators $26.66 - $40,980------------------ Pile-Driver Operators $30.65 - $63,760-------------------- Operating Engineers, and Other------------------ Construction Equipment Operators $26.66 - $55,460-------------- Drywall and Cieling Tile Installers $23.26 - $48,380------------------ Electricians $26.90 - $55,950------------- Glaziers $19.69 - $40,960---------------- Insulation Workers, Floor, Ceiling, Wall $17.32 - $36,020---------------- Painters, Construction and Maintenance $20.82 - $43,200------------- Pipelayers $23.71 - $49,310-------------- Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters $27.53 - $57,25---------------- Sheet Metal Workers $23.32 - $48,500---------------- Structural Iron and Steel Workers $28.84 - $59,990-------------- Helpers- Brickmasons, Blockmasons, Stonemason,and Tile and Marble Setters $20.90 - $43,480-------------- Helpers-Carpenters $15.88 - $33,030---------------- Helpers-Electricians $14.96 - $31,120---------------- Helpers-Painters, Paperhangers, Plasterers, and Stucco Masons $10.77 - $22,390------------- Helpers-Pipelayers, Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters $13.43 - $27,940--------------- Helpers-Roofers $15.88 - $33,040-------------- Helpers, Construction Trades, All Other $12.89 - $26,820----------- Construction and Building Inspector $22.98 - $47,790--------------- Elevator Installers and Repairers $34.20 - $71,130------------- Fence Erectors $15.93 - $33,130---------------- Hazardous Material Removal Workers $17.46 - $36,310------------ Highway Maintenance Workers $18.70 - $38,900--------------- Septic Tank Services and Sewer Pipe Cleaners $16.90 - $35,150---------------- Earth Drillers, Except Oil and Gas $19.00 - $39,520-------------- Helpers- Extraction Workers $12.65 - $26,310------------------
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 15:55
Jobs breakdown for proposed Massachusetts casinos projected-estimated positions. Hourly-Annual. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Slot Service Attendents $12.16 - $ 25,293 (no tips included)------ Slot Technical $17.26 - $35,901------- Slot Supervisory $17.35 - $36,088------ Slot Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142------- Exec Director Slots $53,42 - $111,114------- Dealers $8.18 - $17,014 (Base Rate no tips included)------- Tables Supervisory $20.38 - $42,390-------- Table Games Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142-------- Exec Director Table Games $53.42 - $111,114----------- Poker Dealers $8.18 - $17,014 (Base Rate no tips included)---------- Poker Supervisory $20.38 - $42,390--------- Poker Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142---------- Poker Director $53.42 - $111,114--------- Casino Cashier $11.59 - $24,107--------- Casino Credit Clerk $11.59 - $24,107--------- Pit Clerks $11.59 - $24,107--------- Cashier Supervisor $20.38 - $42,390--------- Casino Cashier Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142-------- Count Room $11.59 - $24,107-------- Count Room Supervisor $20.38 - $42,390---------- Director Casino Accounting $53.42 - $111,114--------- Surveillance $14.65 - $30,472---------- Surveillance Supervisor $20.38 - $42,390-------- Surveillance Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142-------- Surveilance Director $53.42 - $111,114-------- Housekeepers $10.82 - $22,506 (No tips included)--------- Housekeeper Supervisory $19.09 - $39,707--------- Public Areas $12.57 - $26,146--------- Public Areas Supervisor $19.09 - $39,707--------- Housekeeping/ Public Areas------ Shift Manager $27.38 - $56,950------ Director Housekeeping/Public Areas $27.80 - $56,950----- Director Hotel Operations $27.38 - $56,950----- Front Desk $11.60 - $24,128------ Front Desk Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059------ Bell Services $11.39 - $23,691------ Valet Attendant $10.19 - $21,195----- Valet Cashier $9.38 - $19,510----- Valet Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- PBX Operator $13.07 - $27,186----- PBX Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- Massage Therapist $31.49 - $65,499----- Spa Attendant $12.41 - $25,813----- Spa Manager $46.52 - $96,762----- Spa Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- Health Club Attendant $12.46 - $25,917----- Health Club Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- Pool Supervisor $23.45 - $48,734----- Life Guard $11.10 - $23,088------ Grounds Keeper $14.19 - $29,515----- General Maintenance $20.72 - $43,098----- Painter $20.82 - $43,306----- Electrician $26.90 - $55,952------ Carpenter $24.25 - $50,440----- Plumber $27.53 - $57,262----- HVAC $23.48 - $48,838----- Facilities Supervisor $48,26 - $100,381----- Facilities Shift Manager $48.26 - $100,381----- Exectutive Director Facilities $60.64 - $126,131----- Security $12.24 - $25,459----- Security Supervisor $23.43 - $48,734----- Security Shift Manager $32.28 - $67,142----- Executive Director Security $53.42 - $111,114----- Convention Services $12.99 - $27,019----- Retail Manager $27.38 - $56,950----- Retail $12.14 - $25,251----- Retail Supervisor $19.84 - $41,267----- Bartender $11.32 - $23,546 (no tips included)----- Bar Porter $10.05 - $20,904 (no tips included)----- Beverage Server $10.72 - $22,298 (no tips included)----- Food Server $11.01 - $22,901 (no tips included)----- Bus Person $10.05 - $20,904 (no tips included)----- Greeter $9.77 - $20322----- Stocker $10.78 - $22,422----- Food and Beverage Supervisor $15.98 - $33,238----- Food and Beverage Shift Manager $24.67 - $51,314----- Director Beverage $46.42 - $96,544----- Exec Director Food and Beverage $53.24 - $110,739----- Banquet Beverage $11.32 - $23,546 (no tips included)----- Banquet Server $10.72 - $22,298 (no tips included)----- Banquet Manager $15.98 - $33238 (no tips included)----- Director Catering/Convention $46.42 - $96,554----- Room Service Food Server $10.72 - $22,298 (no tips included)----- Room Service Attendant $10.05 - $20,904 (no tips included)----- Room Service Order Taker $9.38 - $19,510 (no tips included)----- Cafeteria $10.05 - $20,904 (no tips included)----- Uniforms Attendant $15.23 - $31,698----- Room Service Supervisor $15.98 - $33,238----- Butler $11.01 - $22,901 (no tips included)----- Director Room Service $46.42 - $96,554----- Cooks $12.43 - $25,854----- Sous Chef $20.71 - $43,077----- Stewards $8.95 - $18,616 (no tips included)----- Steward Supervisor $15.98 - $33,238----- Executive Chef $24.67 - $51,314----- Box Office Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- Box Office $12.04 - $25,043----- Entertainment $20.79 - $43,243----- Stage Managers $28.79 - $59,051----- Promotions Booth $16.31 - $33,925----- Promotions Supervisor $19.74 - $41,059----- Telemarketing,Reservations $16.31 - $33,935----- Bus Greeter $16.31 - $33,925------ Hosts $20.78 - $43,222----- Player Development Exec $56.01 - $116,501----- Executive Director Player Development $56.01 - $116,501----- Director Advertising $56.01 - $116,501----- Director Public Relations $53.02 - $110,282----- Director Database Marketing $56.01 - $116,501----- Director Marketing Operations $56.01 - $116,501----- Hotel/Food and Beverage Cashier $9.38 - $19,510 (no tips included)----- Accountant $30.29 - $63,003----- Accounting Clerks $17.90 - $37,232----- Casino Controller $53.49 - $111,259----- Director Financial Analysis $53.49 - $111,259----- Director Financial Reporting $53.49 - $111,259----- Controller $53.49 - $111,259----- Director Hotel Accounting $53.49 - $111,259----- Purchasing Manager $44.66 - $92,893------ Warehouse Supervisor $25.74 - $53,539----- Warehouse Attendant $15.23 - $31,698----- Director IT $56.53 - $117,582----- Information Technology Techs and Programmers $27.22 - $56,618----- Computer Operator $18.42 - $38,314----- Internal Audit $30.29 - $63,003----- Executive Director Internal Audit $53.49 - $111,259----- Human Resources Supervisors/ Professionals $30.44 - $63,315----- Executive Director Human Resources $53.12 - $110,490----- Director Employee Relations $50.64 - $105,331----- Director Personal $52.90 - $110,032----- Human Resources Administrative $18.66 - $38,813----- Executive Directors $39.98 - $83,158----- Administrative Professionals $17.16 - $35,693----- Vice Presidents $73.12 - $152,090-----
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:04
So at this point, the anti-casino argument of "minimum wage dead end jobs that nobody wants" is complete and utter nonsense without a shred of credibility to back up those claim. The Massachusetts casino law will provide thousands of jobs and employment opportunities throughout the commonwealth in a wide array of field including the trades, hospitality, tech, and more. Like any large company the pay rates are diverse among the spectrum of jobs that go with the gaming industry.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:10
Lets move on to the anti-casino movement's assertions and propaganda of "rampant crime associated with the introduction of casinos" by examining the facts on the ground provided by community leaders and enforcement professionals in communities and states that host casinos throughout the country.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:15 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips) Crime fell around Connecticut casinos since openings-------- LEDYARD, Conn. When the first of two massive casinos opened in a remote corner of Connecticut two decades ago, some officials and residents feared the gambling centers would lead to organized crime, prostitution, drunken driving and other crime.------- But the crime rate since Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun opened has fallen in the nearby municipalities compared to the years before the casinos opened mirroring a drop in crime nationwide. Crime did not decline in some towns near the casinos as much as it fell statewide, but local officials acknowledge the worst fears never materialized.---------- 'I'd say those fears have not come to pass,' said Montville Mayor Ron McDaniel. The crimes studied include murder, rape, robbery, assault, burglary and thefts. Mohegan Sun opened in 1996; Foxwoods in 1992. Montville has averaged 13 crimes per 1,000 residents annually since the casino opened through 2009 down 35 percent from the 19 crimes per 1,000 residents logged in the seven years before either casino was opened, 1985-1991. Montville's post-casino decline is slightly less than the statewide average decline of 36 percent, compared to the seven years before the casinos arrived. Ledyard experienced a 25 percent decline compared to the period before the casino. Crime fell 19 percent in the nearby city of Norwich, 33 percent in Preston and 24 percent in North Stonington.------------ Then-Gov. Lowell Weicker warned in 1991 that Foxwoods would lead to organized crime, prostitution, drunken driving and other crime. But records show prostitution arrests are rare in the casinos and host towns and there is little evidence of mob activity. 'We haven't experienced that type of criminal behavior,' said Lt. J. Paul Vance, a spokesman for Connecticut State Police, which has policed the casinos since they opened. Organized crime, he said, 'really has not crossed our radar.' As for Weicker's prostitution prediction, Mohegan Sun had no prostitution arrests inside the casino from 2003 to 2008, the last year for which statistics were available. Foxwoods had two arrests. Montville and Ledyard, the towns that host the casinos, had none.--------------- Drunken driving arrests are down in Norwich, an average of 208 from 1985 until 1991, the year before Foxwoods opened. From 1992 through 2009, Norwich averaged 163 drunken-driving arrests. Disorderly conduct arrests are also down in Norwich, from an annual average of 767 in the pre-casino years to 354 arrests annually since the casinos.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:21 (Snips) BANGOR, Maine CasinosNO!, the group opposed to expanding gambling in Maine, has issued a press release stating that the citys crime rate has increased, and basically blames the increase on the operation of Maines only gambling casino. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- While statistics do show that the crime rate in Bangor has risen, Bangor Police Chief Ron Gastia denies that the increase is linked to the arrival of Hollywood Slots. Its an untruth, Gastia said Friday responding to the claims of CasinosNO! Its just not true. The people were seeing committing these crimes, we firmly believe, are not the people going to the casino, Gastia said. I don't know how anybody from CasinosNO! can draw that conclusion.Bangor police get very, very few calls to respond to complaints at Hollywood Slots, he said. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- City Manager Edward Barrett agrees with the police chief. We have seen very little crime associated with the casino, he said Wednesday. We have seen some increases. We think a lot of that is related certainly with the economics, and the longstanding issue of being a service community
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:22 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)----We found that the visitor adjusted crime rate for Orlando, Florida is about five times higher than the same crime rate for Ledyard and Montville, Connecticut. You are literally safer taking your grandmother to play the slots at Foxwoods than taking your children to see Mickey Mouse at Disney World. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- And, since Mr. Muir was so focused on the crime of larceny, it is interesting to note that the number of larcenies in Connecticut fell from 2,669 per 100,000 persons in 1995 (before Mohegan Sun) to 2,011 in 2000 and 1,705 in 2007. This in a state that hosts the nation two largest casinos! ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Second, anti-casino activists love to use the term ''gambling addiction'' to link casinos and crime and to equate a night of entertainment with something like heroin addiction. Using the clinical definition of problem gambling, the National Gambling Impact Study Commission (1999) conducted a massive behavioral survey. It found that approximately 1.6% of adults in the U.S. are problem or pathological pathological gamblers at any given time, compared to 2.8% of the adult population that is drug dependent (including legal prescription drugs), and 7.2%, who are alcohol dependent.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:25 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)-------Law enforcement officials in nearby states where casinos have been up and running say the predictions of an impending jump in street crimes never came true.'Some of the horror stories we were hearing have never materialized,' said Detroit Police Commander Kenneth Williams. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Martin Schwartz, a semiretired Ohio University professor who has studied casinos and crime, including prostitution, said the proper comparisons are not being made.He said a common tactic is to cause a 'moral panic' without facts to support the claims.He doesn't think casinos specifically spawn more criminal behavior than any other large gathering. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl told a City Club of Cleveland audience in 2009 that Rivers Casino has seen little of the heightened crime that critics had feared, such as theft and prostitution.Pittsburgh Commander RaShall Brackney said that since the casino opened in 2009 -- near the city's baseball and football stadiums and two minutes from downtown -- she has not seen any increase in vice, narcotics or violent crimes. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In Detroit, where three casinos operate in the downtown area, Commander Kenneth Williams said the biggest surprise after more than a decade of policing the venues and adjoining neighborhoods has been the lack of crime.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:31 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)-------PHILADELPHIA (CBS) Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey says the city's first casino has not created an uptick in crime in that area. At a hearing, Philadelphia City Council members wanted to know whether the SugarHouse Casino on North Delaware Avenue has brought a rash of crime to that area since it opened last fall. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ The answer, from Commissioner Ramsey, was an unequivocal no. Ramsey's department has a specific unit now for casino patrol, and he's relieved that things have gone well. And one of his aides told Council that residents nearby have said they've been pleasantly surprised as well.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:34 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- By Melissa Miller ~ Southeast Missourian -Mayors at gaming forum say casino didn't bring crime to their towns, boosted economy. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (Snips)-----Mayors from towns with casinos touted the benefits of gaming in their communities Tuesday night during a forum organized by Cape Girardeau Mayor Harry Rediger.Boonville Mayor Julie Thacher called her town's casino an "asset," while Alton Mayor Tom Hoechst called his town's casino "the savior of our community." Maryland Heights Mayor Michael Moeller described the improvements his town was able to make with its casino revenues as "awesome."A fourth mayor, Patricia York of St. Charles, Mo., was unable to attend due to a personal emergency, but pre-recorded video statements were shown during the forum. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ When asked if crime increased in their communities after a casino came to town, all four mayors said it did not."They were very afraid of the element this could bring, but we have not seen that at all," said Thacher. "The highest percentage of calls our police get from Isle of Capri are people who have locked their keys in their car." ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ St. Charles Mayor Patricia York said there is no more crime at her town's casino that in its Walmart parking lot. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In Alton, the crime rate has dropped 42 percent since 1990, said Mayor Tom Hoechst. When the Alton Belle casino first opened in 1991, three police officers were assigned to patrol the area, but that stopped after just nine months."Crime in that area actually decreased because people know [the casino[']s] security is so present," Hoechst said. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- When asked about the casinos' effect on existing businesses in their communities, all four mayors said the casinos' arrival didn't force any local businesses to close and Moeller said additional restaurants and bars have opened in Maryland Heights since the casino opened there. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The mayors were asked if they had always supported gambling and while Moeller and Hoechst said they didn't feel strongly either way before working with one in their own communities, Thacher said she voted against it the first time it was on the ballot in Boonville. "I was brought up in a Southern Baptist home," she said. "I wasn't brought up believing in that sort of thing. But the second time, I voted for it. It's been a wonderful thing for our town, and we would be in a world of hurt without the gaming money coming into our town." Thatcher said the jobs a casino could bring is what changed her mind about them. "We need jobs in Boonville and I don't know what we'd do if we didn't have these 500 jobs," she said. "Three-hundred of the 500 employees live in Cooper County, within a 20 mile radius. They buy groceries and gas and spend their money in town." ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- All four communities have used their gaming revenues for different improvement projects, including new government buildings, police and fire equipment, road projects, water and sewer projects, and downtown beautification. The mayors also said the casinos have been good community partners donating money to local charitable organizations and volunteering for community projects.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:39 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (Snips)------'Prior to the casino opening in 2011, we had just over 5 million visitors a year. And with the casino, and the opening of our new convention center, we're going to expect somewhere in the order of 11.5 to 12 million visitors downtown,' said David Gilbert, President and CEO of Positively Cleveland. As a result of more visitors in the downtown area, a common concern is an increase in crime. Similar to Cincinnati, Cleveland's casino is located downtown. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 'To be perfectly frank, downtown Cleveland is amazingly safe and the casino numbers have not changed that one iota. In fact, a lot of people thought there would be a negative element concerning the casino. That has not been the case,' revealed Joe Marinucci, President of Downtown Cleveland Alliance. Gilbert says the downtown location of Cleveland's casino brings much more activity to the area, as well as 24/7 security presence, making the area safer as a whole. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Both Columbus and Cleveland have seen a positive economic impact in surrounding areas. Since opening, the City of Cleveland has received nearly $3 million. In Columbus, the west side of town has seen redevelopment.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:41 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)-------A deputy chief with the Hamilton Police Service says he's found no evidence so far that a casino directly leads to increased crime. Ken Leenderste began researching the issue last year. He's found from other cities that entertainment districts bring more people, which by nature means more crime. But it's not the casino itself. From a policing point of view, we don't have a position as far as whether we want a casino or not, Leenderste told CBC Hamilton. What we are saying is there will be an impact, but it's a reasonable impact. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Leenderste is researching the impact of casinos on crime and police staffing levels. Some areas hire more officers when a casino opens. Niagara Falls has a 30-officer casino unit that patrols a four-kilometre radius around the city's two casinos. Hamilton added no additional officers for Flamboro Downs, he said.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:43 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)-------Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course celebrated its 5 year anniversary this week. Many worried that the addition of a casino would increase crime and cost money. However, law enforcement, business owners, constituents, and industry professionals agree the casino has brought multiple benefits to their community The casino has generated $29 million in gaming taxes for the county. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dauphin County Commissioner George Hartwich sees the casino as “a great community partner.” Since the first slots, Dauphin County has received approximately $2 million from local share gaming taxes, and East Hanover Township, which hosts the casino, has received around $14 million. The revenues go toward public safety, infrastructure, and economic development projects with little to no cost to taxpayers. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ When asked if crime has been affected, Trooper Adam Reed, Pennsylvania State Police, said: “over the past two years it’s known to be quite a large decrease in crimes reported there.” Additionally, numbers coming into the state’s gambling helpline have declined over the five year period according to the state Department of Health. In 2012 the numbers dropped by a third compared to 2011.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:47 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)-------CONCORD - Leaders of the state troopers and police associations said Monday the public safety benefits of bringing a single casino to the state far outweigh what they said were relatively minor criminal drawbacks. At a news conference, David Young, president of the New Hampshire Police Association, said a casino would bring in no more new crime than a new shopping mall, while additional revenue generated by such a facility would fill 15 of 31 vacant state troopers positions on the 317-member force and, as a result, reduce response times to serious crimes. At the same time, Young said, the additional revenue would help fund mental health programs, the Children in Need of Services program for troubled youth and would stave off an expected cut of more than 50 percent in staffing of the Attorney General's Drug Task Force, which is being brought about by the gradual reduction of federal funds. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 'The bottom line is we did our homework on this,' said Cooper who heads the police union. He said the bill 'provides the adequate and necessary regulations to enforce gaming.' Cooper said that police agencies in states with gambling told the New Hampshire groups that 'there was no drastic increase in criminal behavior or a criminal element charging into those communities.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:48
So as anyone of rational thinking can see... there is little validity to the anti-casino claims of rampant crime due to casinos. This is but a small sample of hundreds of positive reports from across the country that completely debunk the hysteria and lies provided as facts by the anti-casino movement that casinos drastically cause a spike in crime.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:51
Lets move on and show some examples that the anti-casino movements claims of disastrous effects of casinos on the local school systems in communities that host them are nothing more than hysterical nonsense with little basis in facts on the ground.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 16:59 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snip)-------Bill McFarland, interim superintendent of Rossford Schools, said the district has had no issues with crime or traffic, as some parents feared. We really have seen no effect. We hardly know its there to be honest with you, McFarland said. The hysteria and paranoia I think has long been forgotten. I think its functioning really well and I dont think its having any negative effect on our community at all.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:01 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)--------Joe McCord, a member of the Peoria Unified School District Governing Board, gave reasons why he supports the resolution. He said when the issue first came to the public’s attention, “I didn’t pay much attention to it until I kept hearing negative reports, until some people said a casino would be detrimental right next to a high school. “As a responsible public elected official, I had to find out for myself.” ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- McCord said he drove to Tucson to visit both of the casinos operated by the Tohono O’odham Nation. Then, he met with two school district superintendents near the casino. He said he went at his own expense, and cleared the visit with the president of the PUSD governing board and the PUSD superintendent. McCord said he put the same question to both Tucson school district superintendents: “What effect has the casino had on your schools?” “Both said, ‘Nothing but good,’” McCord said. He said both superintendents told him the casinos had created jobs for local people, and had also donated grants to the school districts, all kinds of funds for kids. Also, they told McCord they had “no problems whatsoever with kids trying to get into casinos.”
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:03 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ (Snip)-----Prairie Meadows Community Betterment Grants Awarded to 10 DMPS Programs---------- “We are grateful for the generous contributions Prairie Meadows continues to make to the Des Moines Public Schools,” said Dr. Nancy Sebring, superintendent of Des Moines Public Schools. “The grant funds received by our schools and programs will provide many needed resources, such as new books and school uniforms for our students, and the opportunity for the use of innovative learning tools, such as the video modeling project for autistic students at Ruby Van Meter.” ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Prairie Meadows has given more than $1 billion through taxes, grants and charitable donations to the state of Iowa. More than $435 million of that has remained in our community to promote education, economic development, agriculture, jobs and tourism.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:05 DORR ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snip)-----The Allegan Area Educational Service Agency, formerly known as the Allegan Intermediate School District, is an unlikely advocate for the expansion of casino gambling into West Michigan. The organization, along with member districts Wayland, Hopkins and Allegan, have all publicly supported the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians’ efforts to develop a tribal casino in Wayland Township. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “When you start talking to superintendents across the state, you find that every place a casino has gone in it’s had a positive impact to local school districts,” said AAESA Superintendent Ron Fuller. “That’s why I’m here — for increased opportunities for kids in AlleganCounty.”
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:06
Again, this is a small sampling of the complete debunking of the anti-casino movements lies and propaganda regarding the effects of casinos on local school systems. There exist hundreds of other examples all stating the same thing. The effects on enrollment and other perceived issues have ZERO to do with the introduction of casinos to a community.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:09
Now, lets move on and give more examples of complete debunking of the anti-casino movement's rantings and hysterical assertions. The next group of posts will address various other issues and outrageous claims made by Repeal The Casino Deal and the anti-casino movement.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:16
Shaffer, Hall and Vander Bilt, Estimating the Prevalence of Disordered Gambling Behavior in the United States and Canada: A Meta-analysis, Harvard Medical School Division on Addictions, December 1997, pg. iv. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Quote...... Harvard's conclusion casts serious doubt on the argument that the introduction of casino gaming in the new jurisdictions has led to any increase in disordered gambling.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:22
Dr. Peter Reuter, School of Public Affairs, University of Maryland, The Impact of Casinos on Crime and other Social Problems: An Analysis of Recent Experiences -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Professor Peter Reuter concluded: "There is a surprising consistency in both the statistical and interview data. Casinos have had quite modest effects on the measured social problems of the cities in which they have been introduced to in recent years."
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:24 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)----Several conclusions can be drawn from the results presented in this study. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ First, in the opinion of those surveyed, legalized casino gaming is an important revenue generation endeavor for the majority of the communities examined here. It offers an opportunity to reap millions of dollars annually when few (if any) other options exist. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Second, most officials view gaming as a valid, important, and legitimate economic development option for their respective communities, one that spurs secondary or tertiary development near the casino development and elsewhere in the community. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Third, casino profits allow host municipalities to undertake projects and fund programs that would normally not be fundable without casino dollars, particularly large capital improvement endeavors. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Fourth, communities that possess non-Native-American gaming (especially riverboat gaming) reap the largest financial rewards from legalized gambling. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Fifth, gaming appears to represent a sustainable economic development presence over time, rather than simply being a short-term novelty, for most of the communities studied here. Finally, with regard to long-term economic development success, destination-type casinos that attract non-local gamers offer the greatest benefits for host municipalities. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thus, based on the opinion of economic development officials surveyed for this study who can offer unique, professional, and reliable insight regarding the gaming phenomenon and its impact on host cities, legalized casino gaming is both a viable revenue generation and economic development strategy for host municipalities.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:26
Poll and research conducted by Peter D. Hart Research Associates,Inc. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Study and poll focused on elected officials and civic leaders from areas where commercial casinos operate say casinos have expanded the local economy and jobs and helped boost neighboring businesses. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Fully 82 percent of community leaders say casinos are good corporate citizens. And, in perhaps the most telling response, while only 58 percent of the mayors, county executives, police chiefs, city managers and other local leaders polled had a favorable opinion of gaming before it was first introduced, after witnessing the impact on their communities, 75 percent say they would now vote to allow casinos.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:28 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- EMAILWIRE.COM, February 21, 2013 ) San Francisco, CA -- According to the leaders of the anti-casino campaign, bringing casinos into town will hurt the existing businesses and robs, and will enrich only a small group of investors while emptying the pockets of the people in the area. The leaders note that many of the people who stand to lose money are people who, quite frankly, cannot afford to supply the habit. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Despite the concerns of those individuals, voters in each of the 14 counties within Iowa that currently hold casinos, and voted overwhelmingly to keep their operations in places. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- For those making an argument against the casinos and their destructive force within the community, then why have the ballots been backed? In 2010 casinos garner 74 percent backing in Black Hawk County; 81 percent in Clarke County; 82 percent in Clayton County; 77 percent in Clinton County; 74 percent in Des Moines County; 82 percent in Dubuque County; 67 percent in Lyon County; 86 percent in Palo Alto County; 74 percent in Polk County; 80 percent in Pottawattamie County; 74 percent in Scott County; 78 percent in Washington County; 77 percent in Woodbury County; and 86 percent in Worth County. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Community leaders across the board stated that the casinos brought in jobs, added entertainment options, brings in persons from out of town to spend money, and provides much-needed revenue from the taxes levied on the establishments.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:31 ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snip)-------University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study shows Cherokee Casino contributes $380 million to local economy. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Chapel Hill, N.C. Harrah's Cherokee Casino in western North Carolina contributes more than $380 million directly to its local economy and has brought significant economic and social benefit to one of the state's traditionally depressed regions, according to a new report by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ The report, 'Assessing the Economic and Non-economic Impacts of Harrah's Cherokee Casino, North Carolina,' describes the impact of the casino on the region and analyzes the routes of its economic impact. The casino, opened in Jackson County, N.C., in November 1997, has grown from a simple bingo operation to a large, complex, multi-product firm and tourist destination attracting 3.6 million visitors a year. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 'The economic impact of the casino is large and dramatic,' said James H. Johnson Jr., co-author of the report with John D. Kasarda and Steve Appold. Johnson is director of the Urban Investment Strategies Center at the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, part of UNC's Kenan-Flagler Business School. Kasarda is director of the Kenan Institute. Appold is a senior research associate. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 'By attracting significant tourist spending to the region, a majority of which comes from out of state, the opening of Harrah's Cherokee Casino has had a clear positive impact on the economy of western North Carolina,' Johnson said.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:34 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- (Snips)------Good neighbors-----Brenda Schwind, vice president of the Rossford Business Association (RBA), said the casino is a great partner, with St. Jean regularly attending meetings, promoting member businesses to employees and offering financial sponsorship.Everybody I've talked to, even people who were really leery of the casino coming in, are impressed with the facility and Ive heard nothing but good comments, said Schwind, of Directions Credit Union. I think people have been very surprised. They've proven to be a very good neighbor. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Rossford Mayor Neil A. MacKinnon III agreed. It'd be hard to find a day you couldn't find a team member from Penn Gaming in a Rossford business, MacKinnon said during a recent Rossford City Council meeting. Ive been in business quite a while now and I know these guys are sincere and they are for real. I consider them friends and I consider them part of the fabric of the community. Their participation in the RBA has been phenomenal. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Toledo Mayor Mike Bell also feels the casino is a positive asset, said Public Information Officer Jen Sorgenfrei.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:36
The Impact of Casino Gambling on Housing Markets: A Hedonic Approach by Michael Wenz from the Department of Economics at Northeastern Illinois University ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Research focused on the impact of casinos on residential property values. This study found a correlation between casinos and a subsequent increase of about 2% in local property values.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:38
As the late great Paul Harvey would say. Now you have the rest of the story. John Ribeiro and Kathleen Norbut, Repeal The Casino Deal and their various anti-casino groups throughout this state operate on propaganda, lies, deceit, and hysteria to try and advance their regressive agenda. With a complicit media at their side they have managed to make their lies stick with a minority of the uniformed, the gullible, and any Nimby and religious hypocrite looking for an excuse to stop casinos from coming to this state. The rational and the real facts will carry the day in the end and expanded gaming will become a reality in Massachusetts for jobs, revenues, and the recapturing of hundreds of millions of entertainment dollars ALREADY being spent in out of state casino and racino facilities. There is an open challenge to Riberio, Norbut, or any other of their ilk to come to any media venue or blog and prove their hysterics and statements. They will not do that because they are unable to win that battle without hiding behind lies and propaganda that litter their various websites unchallenged. For every example or piece of trash research they show of detrimental effects of casinos, there are dozens that show the exact opposite on nearly every point they make. Anytime, anyplace, and any media outlet Riberio wants to make a case with factual debate on these issues, bring it on, because there are thousands of pages of research, studies, and facts on the ground that prove without a shred of doubt that Riberio and the anti-casino movement are outright liars and propagandists of the highest order out to spread fear and hysteria to the citizens of Massachusetts on this issue.
Posted by OrwellsGhost on 4.19.14 at 17:45

OrwellsGhost, you should strongly consider condensing all of this and submitting a letter to the editor.

Posted by JH on 4.21.14 at 8:40



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