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Delaware Tracks: No New Gaming Venues

Published: March 31, 2009 12:34 pm ET

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Yesterday, during the first of three public hearings hosted by the house gaming committee, Delaware's casino and track operators voiced their feelings about the possibility of expanded gambling in the state. Members of the state's current gaming industry voiced their feelings loud and clear, making it crystal that they are dead against expansion in Delaware.

According to a report by delawareonline.com, the gaming industry's message was straight to the point: Bringing more casinos to Delaware and increasing the state's share of revenues would decimate the existing venues.

"As a partner, we have stepped forward again and again whenever there is a need," said William Fasy, COO of Delaware Park, who also indicated that the expanded gambling would equate to a 25 per cent tax increase. "As a result, our state tax bill and cost-sharing arrangements have increased by $17 million. A 25 per cent tax increase will absolutely cripple our industry."

Patti Key, CEO of Harrington Raceway, played a key part in organizing the racetrack presence at the meeting.

According to the report, Fasy believes that instead of increasing the number of gambling venues in the state, if the existing facilities were able to allow table games (poker, blackjack, etc.) the state would see the increased amount of capital into its coffers which it is seeking.

"There has been an emphasis throughout the state budget on shared sacrifice," Fasy was quoted as saying. "But we don't believe you should put an entire industry at risk."

Governor Jack Markell recently proposed expanded gambling in the state.

To read the delawareonline.com article in its entirety, click here.

(With files from delawareonline.com)


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