New York Raking In Dollars Through Gambling
As the debate to legalize gambling continues, New York is basking in the glory of gambling! According to reports, the sale of conventional lottery games like Mega Millions and Multistate Powerball has increased by two percent the last year. The state’s nine race tracks gave the greatest revenue increment.
The secret was the installation of video-lottery terminals at Aqueduct Race Track located in Queens in October last year. This led the nine racetracks to transform into money-spinning tracks with a whopping 16 percent rise in revenue in 2011, amounting to about $1.3 billion. This is according to reports by the Lottery Division.
Racing against Neighboring Casinos
The racetracks have emerged stronger from the stiff competition thrown in by the casinos of neighboring states. Although the tracks have witnessed hard times in the past years, they have managed to provide profitable operations recently. And last year was boom time for racetracks. They even offered “free play” vouchers!
The prosperity of racetracks is reflected in the following examples:
Hamburg Casino located at Fairgrounds, near Buffalo, gave the highest revenue increase of 18.5 percent or $11 million. This happened after the facility was renovated, spending a massive $25 million on it.
Yonkers Raceway, which is the biggest facility of New York with 5,380 machines, soared its net win by 7.4 percent (up by $43 million) last year.
Tioga Downs situated in the Southern Tier registered increased revenue of 7.5 percent. At Finger Lakes located in Ontario County, the increase was 5.4 percent.
Monticello recorded an increase of 6.1 percent, whereas Saratoga gave an increase of 7.7 percent.
Opening Doors to Full-Fledged Gambling
With the legislature granting approval to operate full-scale casinos, the year promises a series of successes for racetracks. Moreover, the state lottery, which already possesses Lotto and Mega Millions online subscriptions, intends to extend to Sweet Millions and Powerball. The subscription offer enables players to enroll for lottery games automatically for a fixed period.
The US Justice Department has recently given a ruling that may allow the state to expand Poker or Internet Quick Draw. The legislative leaders are endeavoring to legalize casinos through constitutional amendments.
Currently, the New York state law has prohibited tracks to install table games. But, the state runs five full-scale casinos based on Native American reservations. This includes the Turning Stone run by the Oneidas at central New York area. The other three are in western New York and run by Senecase. One is located in northern part of the state.
Recently, the New York Gaming Association launched an ad to induce the state to allow addition of table games on tracks. The track officials are so eager to blend casinos and racing that they are ready to provide jobs and amenities if the state passes the legislation. For this to happen, two legislatures, who are elected separately, will need to grant a constitutional amendment. Then, the voters will approve it, which should happen around November 2013.
The green signal for full-scale casinos in New York would also see the opening of conventional facilities and hotels. It may generate employment, as the need to run and mange casinos would arise. This and more reasons are doing the rounds at the state in a bid to legalize casinos. Till then, New York continues to count on its racetracks and other gambling sites.