Debate Begins for New York Casinos
The state of New York is set to begin debate in 2012 about the possibility of offering legalized casinos, which could be in place as early as 2012 if it receives approval in two different legislative votes.
The push to establish legal US casinos in New York state has the support of Gov. Cuomo but it could be a very close vote in the Assembly, which is controlled by the Democratic party and has yet to show significant support to bring casinos to New York.
Gov. Cuomo has said he will call on the state legislature in 2012 to make the first of two needed approvals of a constitutional amendment to legalize casino gambling. If approved the issue would then move on to a referendum, which would occur no earlier than 2013.
While Cuomo opposes adding casinos to densely populated parts of New York City he is open to establishing casinos at locations such as Aqueduct Raceway in Queens. Several other prominent lobbies in New York have taken a similar stance, willing to consider casinos at Aqueduct and other existing locations but opposing adding them to densely populated areas of the city.
The issue was last taken up in the 1990s when the initiative to legalize casinos was defeated. Since then Indian tribes have opened several casinos of their own in the state and surrounding states have also opened numerous casinos, with potential tax dollars leaving for other state such as Pennsylvania.
New York racetracks have also added additional virtual betting options to simply wagering on races, paving the way for similar brick-and-mortar casinos options as have been opened at racetracks across the US in an effort to revitalize the horseracing industry.
Many states across the US are exploring similar options as far as opening traditional casinos as well as online casinos and poker sites. The lingering impact of the recession in the US has served as a motivating factor to take a serious look at gambling options, which could add hundreds of millions of dollars in additional tax revenues for many states.