Sen. John Bonacic, who heads the Senate Racing and Wagering Committee, is warning that New York City lawmakers shouldn’t look to add more than one casino in New York City without expanding the number statewide.Heaven forbid that people should be denied their rights, endowed by their creator, to play keno and blackjack. It's what Freedom™ is all about, right?
Bonacic, an Orange County Republican who has long advocated for casinos in the Catskills, said reports that a few sites are being considered for New York City shouldn’t infringe on plans to build casinos elsewhere.
“While existing harness tracks and Aqueduct are no sure bet to receive a casino license, the focus has always been a maximum of one in New York City,” Bonacic said in a statement. “We should not be expanding the number of casinos in New York City beyond one, unless the overall number is increased. There are many regions north of New York City that want world class resort destinations associated with a casino license. Those regions should not be deprived of that opportunity.”
Actually, what Bonacic wants is a second casino for his own district. The racino on Monticello is one, and the second one would be at the old Nevele Grande Resort:
WAWARSING – A casino could rise on the grounds of the Nevele as early as Spring 2014, provided all obstacles are overcome — including state approval for gambling — the Nevele's new owner has said.Full stop. Any hope that the Nevele will be redeveloped hinges on gambling being approved by the voters. Talk about long odds.
The public got its first look at site plans for the new Nevele resort at the Wawarsing Town Board meeting Thursday night, July 19. Nevele Investors LLC, a subsidiary of Claremont Investors LLC — which won a court-ordered right to buy the run-down property in February of this year — submitted to the town an Environmental Assessment Form and schematics for its proposed redevelopment.
Nevele Investors CEO Michael Treanor said a more thorough presentation will be available to the public in September or October of this year. A statewide referendum on non-Indian casino gaming is scheduled for November. If gaming is not approved, Treanor and Nevele Investors will not redevelop the property.
But you have to give Bonacic credit. He knows a cash cow when he sees one -- and big-time gambling being approved for his district would be the proverbial golden goose.
So why stop there? If gambling is so great, why not just legalize it across the board? Maybe municipalities can replace town board meetings with casino nights? It would bring new meaning to gambling away the tax money, no?