New York charging $500 million fee for NYC casino license

New York Post
New York charging $500 million fee for NYC casino license
Super Slots

The operators awarded licenses to run any of the three New York City-area casinos will have to pay the state at least a $500 million fee for the chance at rolling the dice, according to new rules approved by a state siting board Tuesday.

The New York Gaming Facility Board released the request for applications, which includes a rating system that will determine the winners of the bids for the casino licenses — including the $500 million license fee, paid within 30 days of the award of the license.

But the license fee can turn into a more pricey bidding war — separating well-resourced contenders from pretenders.

“An applicant may propose to pay a higher license fee,” the siting board said.

The initial casino licenses will run from 10 years to 30 years based on the investment of the winning bidder, and revenue to the state weighs heavily in the rating of the bidder’s proposals.

The category of “economic activity and business development factors” will account for 70 percent of the score of the proposals. That includes capital investment, “maximizing state and local revenues,” providing the most jobs and creating the “highest caliber” casino with an array of amenities.

Workforce development and diversity will account for a combined 20% of the overall score and local siting issues that include mitigating impacts on surrounding neighborhoods accounts for the remaining 10%.

But first applicants must obtain any necessary local government zoning/land-use approvals and receive the blessing of a local community advisory committee — which includes locally elected representatives — before the siting board can even review a bidder’s application.

Because of the community review process, there’s no set deadline for when a decision will be made on the awarding of casino licenses, according to the siting board. But insiders expect the awards to be made by year’s end.

A consortium proposing a casino for Coney Island immediately released a statement Tuesday saying it will submit a bid for one of the licenses. The group includes Thor Equities, Saratoga Casino Holdings, The Chicksaw Nation and Legends — the entertainment firm co-owned by the Yankees. 

The group plans to submit a comprehensive casino, hotel and entertainment proposal for Coney Island — fueled by private, not taxpayer, investment — to provide an economic boost for southern Brooklyn by creating permanent local jobs for residents.

“For more than a generation, Coney Island has been waiting for a year-round economy that creates not just jobs — but careers. Our partnership is unique, combining unrivaled gaming expertise, an unsurpassed track record in entertainment, and a commitment to serving the local community like no other. We look forward to submitting our bid and setting a new standard in economic revitalization and resiliency for New York,” the Coney Island consortium said in a statement.

The owners of the existing slots parlors at the Aqueduct race track in Ozone Park, Queens and Yonkers race track — Genting/ Resorts World and MGM’s Empire City — are expected to submit bids to expand their offerings to include table games.

Meanwhile, Mets owner Steve Cohen is eyeing a casino near the team’s Citi Field in Willets Point, Queens. A 25,000-seat professional soccer stadium is also planned in the vicinity.

Others planning bids to operate a casino include the Steve Ross-Related Companies/Wynn Resorts partnership for Hudson Yards and the landlord SL Green/Caesars Entertainment team in Times Square.