casino gambling

Rivers GM Mary Cheeks speaks with reporters on the casino construction site as Rush Street Gaming CEO Greg Karlin and NYSGC member John Poklemba look on.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The New York State Gaming Commission met Monday afternoon in Schenectady. They discussed horse racing and casino gambling before heading off to tour the under-construction Rivers Casino.


MGM Resorts International has suffered a setback in a bid to block development of a casino in Connecticut that would be a direct competitor to the $950 million casino the Las Vegas-based company is building in Springfield, Massachusetts.

WAMC composite image by Dave Lucas

State regulators are expected to license three new casinos in upstate New York on Monday.

A new report warning of the impacts on existing casinos by new entrants in the Northeast was released this week. Current gambling operations say they're doing what's necessary to stay competitive.

An artists rendering of the proposed MGM Casino in Springfield, MA

MGM is presenting significant changes to its planned $800 million Springfield, Massachusetts casino.

Three casino projects in New York were chosen last December as part of a plan to boost the upstate economy but are still awaiting licenses after nearly a year.

Schenectady is preparing for the transformation of a former industrial area with the arrival a casino. During the planning stages, area residents are asking a lot of questions — from disputes over building designs to what's being done to address problem gambling.

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After this month’s announcement of three casinos now closer to being built in New York, officials from existing gambling operations are preparing for increased competition in a changing gaming landscape.

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The Oneida Indian Nation has announced plans to open a $20 million casino with a "Wizard of Oz" theme in the village where Oz author L. Frank Baum was born.

Ray Halbritter, chief executive officer of the Oneida Nation, tells the Syracuse Post-Standard ( ) the casino will open in the spring in Chittenango, 14 miles east of Syracuse.

The Oneidas announced plans for the Yellow Brick Road Casino four days after a state panel recommended licensing three non-Indian casinos, including one 42 miles west of Syracuse.

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New York trails other states in supporting programs for gambling addiction — even though it plans to open new casinos soon and already makes more money from casinos, race tracks and the lottery than any other state.

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On Monday, Capital Region casino applicants presented their proposals to the New York State Gaming Commission’s location siting board. Politicians and citizens are lining up in support of particular venues.

The board heard Monday from four developers that want to build casinos in the greater Albany/Saratoga region. Applicants were given 45-minute blocks to show promotional videos, run through economic and revenue statistics and argue why they deserve a casino license.


On Monday, the four Capital Region casino applicants appeared in Albany to present their proposals to the New York State Gaming Facility Location Board.

With gamblers seemingly preferring to visit smaller casinos closer to home, the presentations four developers delivered before the New York State Gaming Commission’s location siting board offered practical mid-size packages.    "We are committed to developing the best site there is in a way that best serves this community, its citizens and its economic goals"

WAMC composite photo by Dave Lucas

Though it’s far from having won the Capital Region casino license, Capital View Casino & Resort is holding a job fair Tuesday at the American Legion post on Columbia Turnpike in East Greenbush.

The company's Facebook page promises "Current employees from Saratoga Casino and Raceway and Churchill Downs, Incorporated will be on hand to discuss casino industry jobs and the required qualifications." No pre-registration is required.


How likely are you to visit one of those new casinos when they open for business in New York?

Triin Q/Flickr

Public perception of casinos among upstate New Yorkers continues to evolve. While new gaming halls will be built, people have become more aware of the long-term positives and negatives they'll bring to surrounding areas. 

A Time Warner Cable News/Siena College Poll out Monday finds a majority of those polled favor building a Capitol Region casino.

Opponents of a plan to build a casino in the Rensselaer County community of East Greenbush are sponsoring a speech tonight by a gambling expert, who says there are hidden costs to casinos.

The casino process continues moving forward in New York State. The New York Public Interest Research Group is out with a paper indicating that casino interests have poured millions of dollars into advancing their agendas in Albany over the past two years.

The head of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority says the operator of casinos in Connecticut and Pennsylvania will file applications for New York casino licenses in time for a looming deadline.

WAMC composite photo by Dave Lucas

With the casino application deadline fast approaching in New York, the city of Albany is apparently not supporting any of the projects proposed for neighboring cities.

Local municipal approval is required for applicants seeking one of four casino licenses expected to be granted in upstate New York this fall. The developers face a Monday deadline to submit their casino applications. More than a dozen development groups are in the running to apply for a license.

WAMC composite photo by Dave Lucas

Casinos top the list of issues that have been driving the area agenda. Governor Andrew Cuomo put the wheels in motion during his second State of the State address in 2012. "Let's amend the constitution. Let's do gaming right. Let's make it safe. Let's protect our people. Let's get the jobs back in New York."

The governor reasoned that building new gambling casinos would prop up New York's failing economy.   In November 2013, Cuomo's proposition was approved by voters, and  "casino chatter" has dominated the headlines ever since.

Just days after a casino proposal for Exit 23 in Albany collapsed,  Schenectady has taken a key step in luring Vegas-style gambling to the city.  

Over the last few years, states in the region have tossed the dice on allowing for the development of Las Vegas-style casinos. Today, two development groups dropped out of the running to build a casino in upstate New York, and a new bidder has proposed a casino in the city of Schenectady.

    Casinos in Massachusetts have a star-crossed history — and the licenses haven’t even been awarded yet.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Tim Vercellotti, director of the Western New England University poll and professor of political science, tells WAMC’s Alan Chartock that some voters worry about the impact of casinos on challenged communities.

The fate of casino gambling in Massachusetts may hinge on a case that was argued before the justices of the state’s highest court in Boston this morning.

       The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court heard an hour of oral arguments Monday morning on whether a question should be allowed on the November ballot asking voters if the 2011 law that opened the state to Las Vegas-style gambling should be repealed.

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Thousands of Massachusetts residents are being surveyed as part of multi-year, multi-million dollar research project on the social and economic impacts of introducing casino gambling to the state.

The members of the UMass Amherst led research team say initial results will be reported to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission in September. These findings will be the baseline that will be used to measure changes in problem gambling, domestic violence, housing prices and a host of other socio-economic factors as casinos open over the next one to three years.

Beginning in September Albany law school is launching a new concentration in equine, racing, and gaming law. The program is being introduced as states including New York and Massachusetts are expanding casino gaming.

The effort to bring casino gambling to Massachusetts,which began almost two-and-a-half years ago, has hit some speed bumps along the way.  Gambling opponents believe they still have a chance to shut down the fledgling industry in Massachusetts.

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New York state has issued its much-anticipated Request for Applications to casino operators. Now, some observers think siting criteria could keep a full-size casino out of Saratoga Springs after all.

The Request for Applications to Develop and Operate a Gaming Facility in New York State was issued this week by the State Gaming Commission.

Casino operators seeking a full casino license under New York’s new casino gambling law must submit their applications, along with a $1 million application fee. The cost of the license is $50 million.

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Capital District OTB has partnered with a Rochester developer - they've come up with a $300-million idea to build a casino at Thruway Exit 23.  Albany Common Council members were briefed on the plan Friday afternoon.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Saratoga Springs City Council unanimously passed a resolution opposing New York’s casino gambling law Tuesday night.

Hundreds of area residents packed into Saratoga Springs City Hall Tuesday. The room was seemingly split down the middle, red shirts on one side, white on the other – the colors associated with groups against and for casino expansion at the Saratoga Casino and Raceway.