casino gambling


After a smooth opening 21 days ago, the first resort casino in Massachusetts has been awarded a permanent operating license from state regulators. 


   The first resort casino in Massachusetts has been given the green light to open its doors to the public Friday.  After four years of planning, regulatory approvals, construction, training and hiring a workforce, the MGM casino in Springfield is going to open its doors at 11 a.m. Friday.


MGM Springfield rolled out the red carpet for the media today, providing guided tours of the first resort casino in Massachusetts ahead of this Friday’s public opening.


         Massachusetts casino regulators met in Springfield Thursday for the final time before the opening in 21 days of the state’s first resort casino in the heart of downtown Springfield.


The Oneida Indians say they will expand their gambling operations in central New York with a third casino near Syracuse.

        A new study finds financial and health problems are the most common negative impacts of gambling.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

As workers put finishing touches on a $330 million project that turned a Schenectady brownfield into a resort, WAMC's Capital Region Bureau Chief Dave Lucas joined other members of the media for a sneak peek at the area's new casino — just one week before the grand opening.


A move to expand problem gambling treatment comes as four casinos prepare to open in upstate New York. 

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The $330 million Rivers Casino and Resort at Mohawk Harbor has been reshaping Schenectady’s waterfront. Beside a completed Courtyard Marriott Hotel, an in-progress office complex, and a parking deck, the casino itself was recently adorned with new signage.

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.

Save East Greenbush

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.