Real Estate 20 Under 40

EDITORIAL: Casinos will only add to region's strengths

2013-10-26T22:25:00Z 2013-10-31T14:38:03Z EDITORIAL: Casinos will only add to region's strengths Glens Falls Post-Star
October 26, 2013 10:25 pm

Because of the presence of Saratoga Race Course in the summer, we believe most local communities are more accepting of gambling than other parts of the state.

We don’t look at it as evil, or something to be feared. After all, Saratoga is the original “August place to be,” and a trip to the racetrack is not only acceptable family entertainment, it is still one of the highlights of summer.

We know few people who shun the racetrack for ethical or moral reasons. Saratoga is as much style and history as it is daily double and pick six. The unique experience of 1890s charm has single-handedly revived the hat industry in upstate New York — at least in the summer.

The track also serves as a significant economic engine in the tourism trade.

Tourists may want to stay on the lake, but they tend to time their visits when the track is open. Those in the tourism trade will tell you August is a little bit busier because of the track.

With that in mind, we believe fewer voters in these parts will find a reason to vote against Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s much ballyhooed referendum to allow up to seven Las Vegas-style casinos in the state. We also do not find any objections to changing the state Constitution with this vote.

We are further buoyed by the experience with the nearby racino in Saratoga Springs where electronic slot machines, video poker and parimutuel wagering for horse tracks around the country are allowed.

Over the years, we have seen few ill effects on Saratoga Springs or Saratoga County from Saratoga Casino and Raceway.

So we’re on board, and we believe you should be, too.

That said, we would be remiss if we did not bring up the way the state Board of Elections handled the language of the referendum that will appear on the ballot.

The state Board of Elections made last-minute changes to the language that flowered up the proposal to ensure more votes. That’s not fair, and it should have been changed to something far less subjective when challenged in court.

We believe the Legislature should review the whole dirty mess and clarify the language to something less subjective, but we won’t hold our breath.

We are also skeptical that the gambling proposition will make a dramatic improvement in any upstate economy. We don’t see the addition of a Las Vegas-style casino as the savior so many others do, but view it as another piece of the tourism puzzle.

Thankfully, the Saratoga, Lake George and Adirondack regions already have many pieces of the puzzle, and we should continue to do well, whether casino gambling is part of the future in Saratoga or not.

Allowing New York to have casino gambling will help keep tourist dollars in the state. It might even benefit the tourist shoulder seasons.

We also applaud Gov. Cuomo for the negotiations that settled decades-old disputes with Indian tribes across the state. The deals give American Indian casinos exclusive rights to certain regions of upstate, but also send a stream of revenue to the state.

Bravo on both counts.

We also like that the proposal puts a cap on the number of casinos in the state.

The state should never allow casinos to proliferate to the point where slot machines and other games are in every bar and restaurant.

Saratoga horse racing and the gambling that has gone with it has helped our region to flourish for more than a century.

While we don’t expect casino gambling to have nearly as big an impact, it will add another attraction to what is already a crowded dance card.

Voters should approve of casino gambling when they go to the polls.

Editorial endorsements represent the opinion of The Post-Star editorial board, which consists of Publisher Rick Emanuel, Editor Ken Tingley, Projects Editor Will Doolittle, Controller Brian Corcoran and citizen representative Vincent Palacino.

Copyright 2015 Glens Falls Post-Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(23) Comments

  1. boater_1
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    boater_1 - November 04, 2013 9:51 am

    Wrong as usual. While their are startup costs, predictably casinos ARE a source of revenue for the states where they exist. The more taxes reaped from casinos, the LESS share of TOTAL taxes comes from other sources... that's WHY the proposition exists.

    It is common, but usually foolish to separate 1 tax from another. School & local taxes have skyrocketed in part because of IRAQ IDIOCY & GOP TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHIEST. $ spent there left the feds LESS to send states which in turn shipped shortfalls to locals/schools. Patching high prop. taxes to other sources reduces demand for prop. taxes & moves the burden elsewhere.

    Joe 6-pk won't see that. His vision extends only as far his curb. THAT'S THE PROBLEM!

    The prob. w/ gambling as a revenue source is it's a tax on the lil' guy. The CORRUPT SYSTEM'S rewards are for the wealthiest - thanks to Joe 6-pk. ignorance.
  2. boater_1
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    boater_1 - November 04, 2013 9:39 am

    A no vote likely increases your taxes as the shares pd. by those who choose to not "play," or play in MA, e.g. adds to the shares that are pd, from other sources. The prob. w// Cuomo's plan is that it, like the lottery taxes those w/ the lowest number of discretionary dollars - the poorer.
  3. YMan
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    YMan - October 29, 2013 9:05 am
    Pertaining to Gambling and state budget, Its my understanding that they put the moneys from gambling into the Schools budget lines and take the allotted amount of money that was originally in the School Budget lines, back into the general fund; and likely go spend elsewhere. Casinos are like the economic impact the Rockafellar drug laws had, Imprison a person for drugs, build a Prison in middle of nowhere, and watch a community grow around it. And now the more libertarian conservative type individuals see that its more of an expense than its worth.Congress shuts down old bases and open new ones with the same economic scheme in mind. when they shut these things down though, the area doesn't always sustain. I think the casinos are fine as they are, and no need for any more.
  4. boater_1
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    boater_1 - October 28, 2013 8:35 pm
    If we add casinos, NY will achieve advantages over other states in competition for generally common folks $'s.- commoner s who've fewer discretionary dollars - i.e., the not overly wealthy. That WILL provide revenue badly needed by nearly every state, particularly since the GOP entered us into a mistaken Iraq War & granted HUGE tax cuts for the wealthy, many of whom inherited their lofty positions. (Trump or ML Whitney, e.g.).

    The deck's not only stacked against the relatively poorer, but many argue w/ cause that the surrounding environmental degradation is an unwanted consequence.

    Nonetheless, the aggregate loss is voluntary taxation & that makes it less loathsome because taxes & revenue generated is from voluntary, if poor, investment.
  5. patcher
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    patcher - October 28, 2013 2:03 pm
    When are you people going to wake up? Cuomo is selling this proposition by lying through his teeth , which is certainly nothing new on his part. "It's going to help education" - BULL!!! If that was the case, then why is it a fact that all gambling money goes into the general fund while our school taxes continue to go up each and every year? This is a sham folks. Why is Atlantic city going broke? How many compulsive gamblers are there to support all the present and new casino's that are going to be built? Cuomo got his pay off already and now he has to deliver the goods at OUR EXPENSE!!! Vote NO!!!
  6. Jonny
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    Jonny - October 28, 2013 12:36 pm
    History has a way of repeating itself. There is a reason gambling existed before in NY and was outlawed. Gambling breeds greed. Greed breeds corruption. One doesn't have to look too far to see the history of NY and corruption. Just look at the Township 40 debacle for greed and corruption in our dear state. Casinos will add to the coffers, increase spending/thievery/costs and add few but low income jobs, all of which will COST the taxpayers more in the long run. The lottery was just a stepping stone to increase taxes, our school taxes are higher than ever, they were supposed to go down because of gambling. Spending only increased with the increased revenue... History 101. We NEED casinos like we NEED a bridge to nowhere.
  7. loneoak
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    loneoak - October 28, 2013 7:24 am
    I say open the casino, then maybe when I take my daughter to Stewarts for a make your own sundae I wont have to wait for the line of scratch off addicts, they would be at the casino.
  8. rgiggs
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    rgiggs - October 28, 2013 6:06 am
    You should not have used the word "only" in this editorial's title. Casinos just might produce the positive outcomes that you describe, but that's not the "only" thing they will do. They will also harm a lot of people as described in some of the other readers' comments.
  9. billybobskiff
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    billybobskiff - October 28, 2013 1:13 am
    All you folks voting no really need to get a clue. There is in fact already a casino in Saratoga minus the table games. Do you really see that there is a difference. Its time to adjust to the times fuddy duddys casinos are coming deal with it pun intended.
  10. DWC121
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    DWC121 - October 28, 2013 12:31 am
    Great point. On the same idea, I can not wait for more addicting drugs to become legal !!
  11. sasquatch
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    sasquatch - October 27, 2013 5:04 pm
    I've been in Reno once and Las Vegas once. I didn't gamble a dime. I spent $2.00 on a lottery ticket once. Just once. It was more than 30 years ago.
  12. Mr_Bojangles
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    Mr_Bojangles - October 27, 2013 2:39 pm
    Many people around Saratoga feel that the potential harm of a full casino will outweigh the benefits. If the Glens Falls Post Star so strongly supports gambling , then where was the strong support for a Lake George casino? Was it a case of "not in my backyard'", while still being able to reap the benefits?
  13. theMaven
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    theMaven - October 27, 2013 12:54 pm
    Really silly.

    How many people do you think would come to Saratoga racing
    if there wasn't gambling?

    About as many as currently go to the polo matches up here, not too many.

    the economic thoughts expressed here are about on the same level as the airport committee, ergo one step under voo-doo economics. Casino jobs are among the lowest paid in any industry group,certainly not above poverty level for most. Virtually every aspect of a casino is designed to keep people inside, loosing money, food is there, drink, lodging all there to keep butts cemented to chairs. Last, but not least, remember, only one at a casino who wins, is the casino. While communities struggle with welfare, overcrowding and debt, the money just gets sucked out of the community.

    I honestly cannot see how any sentient being could support this proposition.

    BTW, does Post Star make anything from race tracks or casinos?

    Don't need full disclosure, any disclosure of conflicts of interest would be of interest.
  14. Dave
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    Dave - October 27, 2013 12:49 pm
    If you want to put an end to gambling lets start with the bingo parlors in every non-profit in the state and then shutdown the "gambling parlors" in every retail store as well. Is there any store that is not selling lottery tickets? Show me a Price Chopper, Hannaford, Stewarts or any other and I will show you a gambling operation. While we are shutting all these down let's not forget to get rid of alcohol and tobacco as well. Get real folks and accept full game casinos as another fact of human life and all consequences of human weakness.
  15. albe71
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    albe71 - October 27, 2013 12:18 pm
    Along with the idea's of 5756917 I think it would be good for the Post Star to publish a report on the demise of the gambling casinos in Saratoga in the late 40's and early 50's. A report on who outlawed the casinos and WHY.
  16. 5756917
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    5756917 - October 27, 2013 11:09 am
    How about doing a report on the impacts of casino gambling, good and bad, before asking the people in this area to vote yes on casino gambling.
  17. sasquatch
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    sasquatch - October 27, 2013 11:05 am
    The Post Star's editorial board gets outvoted. Apples and oranges, the commenters say. Apples (horses) and oranges (table gambling). A different animal. When the casinos come in, prepare to move your family. Preferable to a country with single-payer national health insurance. Where people live longer than in the USA. Canada, England, France, Italy, Australia, and a whole lot of others, where they live longer than the USA. Even in Puerto Rico, a year longer. OK, show me someone in Canada who got run over by a truck at age 25. I'll show you a hundred in the USA who were killed by a gambler with road rage, or with a gun.
  18. theMaven
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    theMaven - October 27, 2013 10:17 am
    The most recent study on gambling, stated that 9 out of 10 dollars
    of gaming profit, come from 'problem' gamblers.

    Like the liquor business makes most its money from drunks, gaming makes most its money from gambling addicts.

    and no, these are not the professional, college trained type, more the type who blow their families pay check on this addiction.

    I've always said, gambling is a wonderful dalliance for the mathematically impaired. Both for those who cannot make sense on a 30% return being a stupid play, to those who see the dollars today, and are blind that they come from the welfare cases of tomorrow.

    As with scratch offs that were supposed to help education, all this activity does is feed the mindless maw of government, and sluice billions from local economies, to the home planet of whatever bloated corporations run these greed palaces.

    My god, look at Mass., was it Springfield, who voted down gambling.

    Smart people, hope we are the same.

    Vote smart.

    Vote NO!
  19. stemman
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    stemman - October 27, 2013 10:17 am
    Gambling. Has it ever enhanced the lives of people in a community in which it was legal? Sure there are jobs in the industry. Some pay rather well, but look at Atlantic City, and you will see what it has done. Money generated in the casinos has not made it a better place. Poverty and crime abound. When first looking into the issue, I visited the city and saw the following: casinos on the shoreline, pawn shops on the next street inland, hookers on the next street, and places that looked dangerous on the next. Is Atlantic City better off? Also, think of Las Vegas. Is this what we want for NY? I hope not. I love NY, but I will not love it as much if casinos are built. After all, if it's all about money, why don't we just frack the heck out of our land? I don't like fracking, nor do I like the idea of casinos for NY.
  20. dot2dot
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    dot2dot - October 27, 2013 9:17 am
    Casinos are the lowest of low class entertainment. Sure the glitz & supposed 'glamour' of Las Vegas with its shows and entertainment are what get promoted. But what actually follows casinos are crime, addiction, and an increase in low-life population. Think South Street was or still is bad? Wait to you see what a casino will bring to the area. Are you really ready for areas of your city to be labeled "safe during the day, but dangerous after dark"?
  21. robzzyzx
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    robzzyzx - October 27, 2013 9:15 am
    The more things change, the more they stay the same? Deja vu all over again? Canfield Casino could be brought back to life!
  22. temptedsniper
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    temptedsniper - October 27, 2013 8:12 am
    you are right casino's would strengthen the area financially. but at what cost? comparing table gaming to horse racing is wrong, both are forms of gambling but that is where the similarities end. Horse racing has aspect of tradition that appeals to families where as these casino's will not. you mention they will be vegas type hotel/casino's but this is not true while they will offer all the table games I am sure that there will be far les shows and entertainment no theme parks for children. they will destroy the character of LG. they will show NO concern for the lake itself or the residents of the area who do not work for them. if you want to see what kind of people will be patronizing these casino's you need only go to the OTB on the first and third of the month. the t-shirt shops will be replaced with pawn shops and check cashing stores. on the plus side though there will be more tax dollars for the state and hours the bars will be able to serve will be extended to state maximums
  23. DWC121
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    DWC121 - October 27, 2013 1:59 am
    I'm still voting against casinos. No ethical or moral reason either. I gamble occasionally but only AFTER I've paid my monthly bills put some money in my retirement account. I know some people are addicted to gambling... and others like the entertainment it gives them. I know we can not take everything away that COULD BE addicting.

    Tourists have been coming to Saratoga for years. Up to 7 new Las Vegas style casinos in NYS (Central, Eastern, Northern, and Southern - Western NY will be excluded from any new casinos because of the exclusivity agreement that the Seneca Nation of Indians has with NYS). This will put a casino in most people's back yard. If up to 7 new casinos are built in NYS, I wonder how many tourists will NEED to come to Saratoga in August.


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