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Schenectady casino group praised

Host communities say Rush Street Gaming lives up to billing

This rendering depicts the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Ill., which is operated by Rush Street Gaming.
This rendering depicts the Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Ill., which is operated by Rush Street Gaming.
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Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh Gaming floor: 129,083 square feet Employees: 1,800 Gross revenue: $345 million Slot machine revenue: $277 million No. of slot machines: 2,982 Table game revenue: $68 million No. of table games: 113 About Pittsburgh Population: 305,841 Median household income: $38,029 Bachelor’s degree or higher: 35 percent Below poverty level: 22.5 percent SugarHouse Casino, Philadelphia Gaming floor: 51,000 square feet Employees: 1,100 Gross revenue: $262 million Slot machine revenue: $176 million No. of slot ...


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comments

dagiacalone
August 3, 2014
1:50 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

It sounds as if the Gazette has only talked to casino boosters -- Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development staffers, and the like -- who sound like Schenectady's development professionals, with not a bad word to be said about any development. What do casino opponents and advocates for the poor say?
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Here are a few things your readers should know about SugarHouse in Philadelphia. (1) Rush Street Gaming [RSG] scaled down its casino in Philadelphia in response to community concerns about its size, but only four years after opening, it has broken ground on an "addition" that is much larger than the original casino, with its CEO saying "we've waited a long time to do this."
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(2). RSG's CEO Carlin brags that they encourage their customers to stay at surrounding hotels. Of course it does: SugarHouse has no hotel of its own and must help customers find suitable lodging nearby.
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(3) As to crime near SugarHouse, RSG forgets to mention (as does the Gazette) that Philadelphia PD has created a 14-man unit that solely patrols a one-half mile square around the casino. [A patrol that size would cost over $1 million annually in total compensation in Schenectady.] That surely accounts for the drop in crime. Unfortunately, however, there has been "displacement" and the area just past that half-mile radius (analogous to our Stockade neighborhood) has seen very large increases in vehicle theft and vehicle break-ins.
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In addition, a major study of crime near SugarHouse since its opening in 2010 says that "“Violent street felonies increased in the target area compared with the control area.” The authors of the report say the increase was not significant, but tell that to the victims.
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(4) At SugarHouse RSG has specifically targeted young gamblers by creating a less-complicated form of craps, called "Props & Hops." It has also recently added a large number of poker tables. They plan to have 12 poker tables in Schenectady, at a casino only a block from a major undergraduate Union College dorm, and a few blocks from Union's campus of poker fanatics. Since New York is one of the few states that allows 18 year-olds to gamble, we can surely expect a lot of promotions aimed at our pre-21 crowd.
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Finally (for now), RSG claims in its Application that there will be no increase in the prevalence of problem gambling in Schenectady, because our residents can already go to Racino in Saratoga, or to Foxwoods in Connecticut, or Atlantic City. Apparently, no one on the Applicant's team has read the many reports showing that gamblers go to casinos a lot more often when there is one conveniently nearby. In fact, studies show that the number of problem gamblers doubles in the area within ten miles of a new casino.
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What other claims has Rush Street Gaming been make that have no basis in fact?
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Find more about Schenectady's casino at stoptheschenectadycasino.com

safny
August 3, 2014
8:03 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

I, too, am concerned about what type of crime will accompany a casino in Schenectady. If we have to add more officers to the police force, it will eat up any benefit to the city from the casino. And I keep saying that the chronically unemployed in this city will not be the first to get jobs at a casino. People who handle other people's money usually need some type of job history to be hired. It's just amazing that we voted no and here we are, about to get a casino.

ChuckD
August 3, 2014
12:25 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

I can't find strong enough words to describe my disappointment with the Daily Gazette in publishing this piece of "journalism". If you had labeled this as an editorial I might have read it with those grains of salt and moved on (less disappointed). But this is being presented as "news". It is not. It is the very definition of a "puff piece" and should be held up in school journalism classes as an example of such.
Wait, there is one word I can think of...disgusted.
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Thanks dagiacalone for doing what the Gazette failed so pathetically at.

dagiacalone
August 3, 2014
12:49 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

Thank you, ChuckD. I wonder if Gazette editors wanted to counteract the article on June 8th, by Bethany Bump, entitled "Officials in other cities warn of pitfalls, failed promises by Rush Street"? See

http://www.dailygazette.com/news/2014/ju...

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