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  • Rich Klein


An agreement was reached Thursday between Governor Kathy Hochul and state legislative leaders to authorize three, full-fledged casino licenses downstate as part of their final budget negotiations for fiscal year 2023.

Genting, which owns Resorts World Catskills, has lobbied hard to get one of those licenses at its existing Resorts World NYC site at the Aqueduct Racetrack site in Queens that opened in 2011.

MGM Resorts, which has owned Empire City Casino in Yonkers for about two years, is another frontrunner for a license.

Genting reportedly has the support of Joseph Addabbo Jr., chair of the Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering, whose district just happens to sit in Queens.

In addition, the powerful union known as The New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council, AFL-CIO, has endorsed Hochul's election campaign.

The 37,000-member union has a significant number of members employed at Resorts World NYC- and also lists Resorts World Catskills and the Kartrite Resort and Indoor Water Park as members.

Once the budget bill passes, the New York State Gaming Commission would issue requests for applications, then begin the process of assessing sites of those applicants.

When RW Catskills was awarded one of four upstate casino licenses in 2014, it was given a legal head start before any other casinos in the state could get full-fledged licenses. That was done to spur economic development upstate and to give the Catskills and other regions certainty that they would not have to compete against nearby casinos.

With Genting, MGM Resorts and others bidding for three licenses downstate, it's unclear at press time what impact that might have on the future of RW Catskills.



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