Adrienne Adams supports casino expansion at Aqueduct Racetrack

New York Post
Adrienne Adams supports casino expansion at Aqueduct Racetrack
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The next City Council speaker wants to roll the dice.

Queens Councilwoman Adrienne Adams — who secured the votes needed to become the leader of the 51-member legislative body in 2022 — is lobbying the state to award a casino license on her home turf at Aqueduct Racetrack in South Ozone Park.

She sent a Dec. 8 letter to Gaming Commission officials urging them to allow the conversion and expansion of Genting’s Resorts World slots parlor at Aqueduct into a full-fledged casino with live card table games.

Under its current license, Resorts World, which first opened in 2011, can only offer slot-type video lottery betting games.

Up to three downstate casino licenses are up for grabs.

The Post last week reported about a proposal to open a “Monte Carlo”-style casino along Manhattan’s East River waterfront near the floating Water Club on 30th Street.

“Resorts World has contributed mightily to New York’s economy, creating jobs for local residents and spurring economic development in the borough of Queens,” Adams — no relation to Mayor-elect Eric Adams — said in the letter to the gaming commission.

Adams noted that Resorts World currently employs more than 1,000 unionized employees in good paying jobs with the vast majority being “people of color” and from Queens. Nearly half the workers are women, she added.

The speaker-elect said Resorts World has been a good community neighbor, donating $2 million to local charities such as Queens Boys & Girls Club and has hosted many community events and health fairs .

Gaming giant Genting always envisioned expanding to a full-fledged casino when it opened a decade ago.

A new $400 million hotel, The Hyatt Regency JFK at Resorts World, just opened at Aqueduct.

“Resorts World has been an outstanding partner in our community and has
contributed to the economic and social fabric of our borough,” the speaker-elect representing southern Queens said.

Having Adrienne Adams as a strong ally makes it less likely that the gaming commission will award a casino license near the Mets’ Citi Field ballpark in Willets Point. Genting opposes having a competing casino just a few miles away, sources said.

Civic groups in northeast Queens also oppose having a casino at nearby Willets Point.

Meanwhile politicians in Westchester County sent letters to the gaming commission urging them to award a full casino license to the MGM Resorts’ Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway — including Westchester County Executive George Latimer and Mayor Mike Spano.