Cuomo to propose Niagara Falls casino

Cuomo to propose Niagara Falls casino

Posted in the Utica Forum

Indian Revenge

United States

#1 Feb 3, 2013

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is reported to be planning to propose a new casino in Niagara Falls, where the state has a long-standing dispute with the Seneca Nation over revenue sharing.

The Buffalo News reported today that Cuomo’s move could be a way of jump-starting stalled talks over more than $500 million in gambling revenue payments the tribe has withheld in a contract dispute with the state. Or it could be an attempt to bring competition to the tribe’s western New York gambling empire.

The News cited a Cuomo administration source who insisted on anonymity. The administration didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment today.

The newly created state Gaming Commission would have to determine that the state’s 2002 casino compact with the Senecas has been breached before a non-Indian casino could be built in Niagara Falls. In recent years, the Senecas haven’t made payments to the state and localities, saying the state violated the compact by allowing casino-style gambling at racetracks in Hamburg and Batavia.

Cuomo has said he wanted to bring three non-Indian casinos to upstate as a revenue source but he hasn’t publicly identified specific sites.

For Cuomo’s casino plan to move forward, state lawmakers will have to again pass an amendment to the state’s constitution allowing the state to regulate up to seven casinos statewide, and voters would have to approve it.

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