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Governor, legislature locked over number of casinos

Christopher Chappelear

ALBANY – As the issue of legalizing casino gaming in New York heads toward reality, Governor Cuomo and the legislature are at odds over the number of facilities to be allowed.

The governor wants to start with three upstate, without naming locations.

The legislature would like seven approved.  Senator John Bonacic (R- Mount Hope), chairman of the Senate Gaming and Wagering Committee, would like the locations identified.

“We in the legislature think all seven places where the casino licenses could go should be identified so when the people go vote, they know exactly what counties they may be going in,” Bonacic said. “The governor just talks about the first three or four upstate without identification and that the rest would be done by a gaming commission and no one knows where they would locate them.”

Three sites have been proposed in the Catskills – at the former Concord Hotel site in Kiamesha Lake, the Nevele Hotel site in Ellenville, and the old Grossinger’s Hotel in Liberty.