New commercial casino licenses issued by New York state resulted in more than $30 million being paid to a variety of counties and municipalities in upstate.
Where did the new money come from?
The payments were recently announced by the office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, as a result of three new casinos under construction in the state, including:
- Montreign, located near Monticello in the Catskills Mountains.
- Rivers Casino near Schenectady.
- Lago Resort & Casino in the town of Tyre in the Finger Lakes region.
All three casinos have plans to open next year.
There are already nine racinos and five tribal casinos in the state, but late last year the state approved licenses for three commercial casinos that are not connected to race tracks or Native American tribes.
Where does the money go?
The money earmarked for upstate jurisdictions is $30.2 million, which is being paid to 22 counties and three municipalities.
Cuomo said this in a press release:
“This funding will help counties and local governments provide essential services to their residents as well as work to reduce their tax burden. These destination resorts will help drive more tourism and economic development dollars upstate and, with these payments, local governments are already seeing the benefits of these projects.”
The total of the fees paid equals more than $150 million, with 80 percent “applied statewide for school aid/property tax relief.”
New York State Association of Counties Executive Director Stephen Acquario had this to say after the payments were announced:
“Governor Cuomo has demonstrated that smart gaming policy helps the entire state. With these funds, Governor Cuomo has fulfilled an important commitment he made with the passage of the Upstate New York Gaming and Economic Development Act. Millions of dollars in casino license fees are a much-needed benefit to upstate communities, and we are grateful for the support.”
The full list of jurisdictions receiving payments can be seen here.