Latest News
6/29/08 to 7/5/08

Kansas AG says phasing-in of casino investment OK

KS - Kansas Attorney General Stephen Six has issued a legal opinion stating that the phasing-in of the minimum investment for a state-owned casino is not prohibited by the Kansas Expanded Lottery Act. / July 02, 2008

2 Former Tufts Workers Accused Of Nearly $1m Theft

CT - Two former Tufts University employees are accused of stealing nearly $1 million in student activities funds for personal trips and spending at places like the Foxwoods Casino and Resort and Prada. / The Associated Press / July 2, 2008

A high school for Austin, not Showtime at Apollo

IL - A casino adds more problems than solutions. It will have a big burden in Austin and its economic future, with foreclosure rates skyrocketing, that will be the least of your problems. In the study titled, "Business Profitability vs. Social Profitability: Evaluating Industries with Externalities, the Case of Casinos," economists Earl Grinols and David Mustard used an economic cost-benefit analysis and found "the cost of casinos are at least 1.9 times greater than the benefits." In other words, one dollar's worth of casino profits and other social benefits costs taxpayers at least $1.90 in "cost-creating activities such as crime, suicide, and bankruptcy," and the expensive social problems engendered by "problem and pathological gamblers." Casinos increase crime in their host counties and crime spills over into neighboring counties to increase crime in border areas. "Casinos create crime, rather than attract it from elsewhere," they found. / Roman Morrow / 7/2/2008

Accused drug trafficker arrested in Las Vegas

NV - Authorities say 50-year-old Gregg Ward was arrested Tuesday at a Las Vegas casino. / The Associated Press / Jun 30, 2008

Akron isn't bluffing about gambling

OH - Akron officials are hoping they have come up with a winning hand to crack down on illegal gambling. Doug Powley, the city's chief prosecutor, announced Tuesday that his office is developing legislation requiring gaming operations in Akron to be licensed. ''We will ask City Council to license these businesses so we can open their doors and their records,'' Powley said. He said the legislation will require gaming establishments to post odds, list prizes and report the names of winners and the payment of winnings. / Beacon Journal / By Carl Chancellor / Jul 02, 2008

Ameristar Casino ready to roll in East Chicago

IN - Now that the change from Resorts is all but complete, the new Ameristar Casino is ready to continue where its predecessor left off. Horseshoe puts the finishing touches on its new hotel and vessel up the road in Hammond. / Quinn Post-Tribune / By Michelle L. / July 3, 2008

Ameristar rises with rebranded casino

IN - Ameristar Casinos Inc., the energetic Las Vegas-based gaming company, has officially entered the Greater Chicago gaming market. The company has rebranded the East Chicago, Ind. casino-hotel property formerly owned by Resorts International. / By John G. Brokopp / July 4, 2008

Another suspect pleads guilty in extensive card cheat scheme

WA - Johnson... Pleaded guilty... To conspiring to steal from the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Among those recruited into the scheme was... Nickels, the... Son of Seattle Mayor... And a former pit boss... / P-I / By LEVI PULKKINEN / July 1, 2008

Atlantic City will consider rezoning for casino

NJ - A Pennsylvania-based casino and racetrack company may finally get its wish to plant its feet in Atlantic City soil. City Council will consider rezoning a 23-acre parcel here to allow casino development for Penn National Gaming, following a recommendation by the Planning Board earlier this month. But Penn National's potential casino wouldn't exactly be rubbing elbows with other city gambling halls. The proposed development would take place on the outskirts of the resort... / By MICHAEL CLARK / July 02, 2008

Beware, Bottom Fishers

NY - Las Vegas Sands Corp. Stock in the operator of the Venetian Resort & Casino and the Palazzo has fallen about two-thirds from its 52-week high. In a recent report, J.P. Morgan analyst Joseph Greff said the second half of the year could be the worst period for Las Vegas since the months after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. So, Mr. Greff recently downgraded Las Vegas Sands' earnings estimates for this year and next. / By DAVID REILLY / July 2, 2008

Beware: 'Machine Zone' Ahead

MD - All forms of gambling are not created equal. Marylanders should take this into account when deciding how to vote in November's referendum on slots. My research as a social anthropologist has been focused on a dramatic turn that has taken place in recent decades from social forms of gambling played at tables to asocial forms played alone at video terminals. If voters endorse the proposal to alter Maryland's constitution to allow slot machines at racetracks, residents will be exposed to devices that have been carefully designed to make them lose as much as possible. / Natasha Dow Sch,ll / July 6, 2008

Blackjack Gambling Continues At Seminole Casino In Florida

FL - The Seminole Indians took a rough blow on Thursday when the Florida Supreme Court ruled that a compact that was signed between the Seminoles and Governor Charlie Crist was void. Even though the Supreme Court ruled against the compact, the Seminoles are continuing to offer Vegas style slots and blackjack at the casino. / By Susan Torres / July 4, 2008

Bodog Goes Mobile

- Online casino has announced the release of its Bodog Mobile service to offer players both in-browser flash-based and downloadable traditional table games on their telephones. / 03-07-08

Budget Expert, Tax Watchdog Sound Caution Over Lottery Plan

CA - Lawrence McQuillan, director of business and economic studies at the San Francisco-based Pacific Research Institute, said California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R) plan to borrow money against the state lottery "is like a bridge to take us from where we are today to what we hope will be better economic times down the road." "Politically, it's brilliant and avoids immediate tax increases," McQuillan said. "But after three years, if the economy is not booming, there is no nest egg there. If state spending continues at the pace it's been going and revenues don't turn out to be strong, we're back where we started from. / The Heartland Institute / By: Steve Stanek / July 1, 2008

Californians Doubt Schwarzenegger's Plan to Borrow against the Lottery

CA - California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) has proposed borrowing against future earnings in the state lottery to solve the state's budget deficit, currently estimated at $17 billion. California voters would have to approve the move. A decision to put the issue to voters this November rests with state lawmakers, as there is not enough time to gather signatures from the public to force the measure onto the ballot. Opinion polls show most state residents oppose the idea, and reaction from lawmakers has been mixed. / The Heartland Institute / By: Krystle Russin / July 1, 2008

Casino Queen customer injured while cashing in files personal injury suit

IL - Casino Queen customer Melvin Burton is seeking in excess of $50,000 in damages after he slipped and fell on water at 1 a.m. on June 1 while waiting to cash in his receipts. / By Ann Knef / 7/3/2008

Casino Robbery

LA - A small casino just south of Shreveport was the scene of an armed Robbery around 3:00 am Tuesday morning. / July 1, 2008

Casino gambling

KS - With a fraction of the capital being invested in gambling facilities, SE Kansas could have a solar panel manufacturing plant up and running already. And the Kansas Technology Center could be training people to install and operate alternative energy equipment. / The Morning Sun / Bill Sollner / Jul 04, 2008

Casino owner wants to delay riverfront development

- Majestic Star Casino architects asked city planners today to let them delay building an amphitheater, dock and path on the river's edge for at least three years, The request to delay the boat dock and grass amphitheater is a strategy to cut costs... Members of the Riverlife Task Force said the Planning Commission should deny the delay because Majestic Star owner Don Barden's original plans promised to feature a $3.5 million dock and outdoor theater. / TRIBUNE / By Jeremy Boren / July 1, 2008

Casino patrons don't like smoking

CA - About 85 percent of the 1,766 casino patrons surveyed said they preferred a non-smoking environment... / by Onell Soto / July 01, 2008

Casinos continue legal fight against horse tracks

IL - Four Illinois casinos are asking the state's Supreme Court to reconsider its June ruling that they pay about $76 million to the state's struggling horse racing industry. The dispute centers on a 2006 state law that requires the state's top-grossing casinos to pay 3 percent of their revenues to the horse racing industry, including Fairmount Park at Collinsville. The fee came off revenue above $200 million a year, which affected just the four highest-grossing casinos, at Aurora, Elgin and the two in Joliet. Those casinos sued, arguing the law unfairly taxed them and didn't touch the state's five other facilities, including those at East St. Louis and Alton. / By Kevin McDermott / 07/02/2008

Casinos' nemesis turns to churches

WA - Members from at least eight congregations - including Baptists, Episcopalians and Mormons - already have gathered petition signatures to put a halt to minicasinos in Lakewood. "We've been signing lots of petitions," said Joyce Hazelbaker, office administrator at St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Lakewood. "We feel that more casinos is going to bring more crime into Lakewood." "Gambling is contrary to our doctrine, our practice and our teachings," said Perrin Walker, a regional leader for the Mormon church and a Tacoma attorney. "The church is an institution of salvation and redemption, but not a political institution." / The News Tribune / STEVE MAYNARD / July 5th, 2008

Conn. casinos cut jobs

CT - Even casinos aren't a safe bet anymore during the current economic downturn. Connecticut's two giant Indian casinos are belt tightening, using tactics most businesses are very familiar with, as hard times and rising gambling competition take their toll on revenue. Foxwoods recently laid off 100 employees, including several middle managers, in the first big job cut industry observers can recall since the casino opened in the early 1990s. / By Scott Van Voorhis / July 5, 2008

Court nixes state's casino compact with Seminoles

FL - The Florida Supreme Court has struck down Gov. Charlie Crist's compact with the Seminole Tribe of Florida to expand their casino operations on tribal lands. The ruling is a stinging defeat for Crist, who campaigned against expanding gambling but asserted after taking office that the decision by South Florida voters to embrace more gambling forced him to negotiate a new compact with the Seminoles. / Tallahassee Bureau / Aaron Deslatte / July 3, 2008

Debate over casino list poaching

NJ - ...But as the lists have become more valuable, a sort of black market has emerged. Some casino executives say they have been approached by someone offering to sell a competitor's list. Others have been accused of taking the high-roller list with them to their next job. Civil suits are common, though criminal charges are rarely filed. / 4 July 2008

Debt-Laden Casinos Squeezed by Slowdown

NV - The gambling slowdown that began early this year is taking a serious toll on Las Vegas, with banks, investors and private-equity funds growing as tightfisted as the consumers who are gambling less in the slumping economy. Once believed to be recession-proof, casinos are proving to be highly vulnerable to the economic downturn, which is striking the industry at a bad time. Las Vegas is entering its lethargic summer season, and a boom-time frenzy of grand expansion plans and private-equity buyouts has left casinos laden with debt. / By TAMARA AUDI and JEFFREY MCCRACKEN / July 1, 2008

Delay sought for casino's amphitheater, docks

PA - Majestic Star Casino owner Don Barden has a lot to overcome to keep his North Shore project on target for a May opening. He must finalize all of the money for his project -- pegged at $780 million -- and he faces opposition to changes in his plans. The latest challenge occurred Tuesday when members of the Riverlife Task Force said the city Planning Commission should refuse Barden's request to delay building a $3.5 million outdoor amphitheater, boat dock and riverfront path. / TRIBUNE / By Jeremy Boren and Andrew Conte / July 2, 2008

Dice roll faster on downtown Buffalo casino project

NY - Thursday morning, Judge Stanley Makowski ruled that the Seneca Nation has immunities from Buffalo city rules and regulations, allowing construction of the Buffalo Creek Casino to go forward. Attorney Bob Knoer says he'll continue to argue his case for people who live near the development. Knoer said, "We are going to be placing in the middle of this a Seneca development which pays no taxes. The hotel will pay no bed taxes. They have no obligation to follow our rules regarding nuisances, noise, odor, dust, whatever." / by Ellen Maxwell / July 3, 2008 09:49 PM

District judge rules tax petitions invalid

NV - A district judge ruled today that tax petitions pushed by Las Vegas casino owner Sheldon Adelson were defective and should not be on the November election ballot. District Judge Todd Russell said this was a "harsh remedy" and would "disenfranchise thousands of voters" but the initiative petitions did not follow the law. The initiatives would divert future increased room tax money from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and sent it either to the public schools or to other government functions. / By Cy Ryan / July 2, 2008

Dozens Of Machines Removed From Illegal Gambling Operation

FL - The Florida Department of Law Enforcement raided an illegal gambling operation in Lake County on Tuesday afternoon and seized dozens of machines, including video poker and slots. / July 1, 2008

Ed sets sites on city casinos

PA - Claiming that "the political landscape has changed" in the battle over casinos in Philadelphia, Gov. Rendell said yesterday that he will meet with operators of two proposed gaming houses about abandoning their Delaware River sites. Rendell spoke a day after two powerful Philadelphia legislators - State House Appropriations Committee chairman Dwight Evans and State Sen. Vince Fumo - threatened the operators with legislative recrimination if they didn't agree to relocate the casinos. / Philadelphia Daily News / By DAVE DAVIES & CHRIS BRENNAN / Jul. 5, 2008

Families sue tribe in casino deaths

ID - Donald S. Hanson, 55, of Fairfield, Wash., and Richard E. Stokes, 49, of Rockford, Wash., died when a fire ignited in a metal shipping container used for storage behind the Coeur d'Alene Casino in northern Idaho. / July 02, 2008

Flight of the fugitives

- Fugitive brothers in Vancouver The secretive and lavish lifestyle of Las Vegas high rollers is taking centre stage in the trial of two fugitive bankers who allegedly stole over US$400 million in China and stashed chunks of their loot in British Columbia. Prosecutors allege that the two from the Bank of China - and a third who has been deported back to Beijing in an unprecedented extradition agreement - created a network of phony companies, staged sham marriages and used fraudulent visas to launder the cash in Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, Macau and the United States between 1991 and 2004. "All of the defendants were high profile gamblers known to many Las Vegas casinos," Prosecutors described the three as "high rollers" with daily transactions at Las Vegas casinos in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. / South Asian Post / July 02 2008

Florida Supreme court nixes Indian casino pact

FL - The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday overturned an agreement Gov. Charlie Crist signed with the Seminole Tribe to expand gambling at its casinos, saying the governor had no right to allow games that are illegal elsewhere in the state. The opinion doesn't take issue with the slot machines, which are also legal at Broward and Miami-Dade County jai-alai frontons and horse and dog tracks, but rather with the table card games. "What is legal in Florida is legal on tribal lands, and what is illegal in Florida is illegal there. / The Associated Press / By BRENDAN FARRINGTON / Jul. 03, 2008

Florida to add Powerball

FL - Florida lottery officials said Wednesday they will add the national Powerball game to the state's portfolio in January and become the new host for the game's semiweekly drawings. Adding Powerball reversed a decision nearly 10 years ago by former Gov. Jeb Bush, who feared the popular national game could damage Florida's offerings. / Associated Press / BRENT KALLESTAD / July 2, 2008

Former utilities worker gets 90 days in jail 14 years of probation

CO - A judge sentenced a 69-year-old Colorado Springs woman to 90 days in jail Monday as partial punishment for stealing almost a half-million dollars from Colorado Springs Utilities. Other conditions of her 14-year supervised probation include: That Inzer not gamble while she's on probation. That she continue with mental health counseling. / THE GAZETTE / BY DENNIS HUSPENI / July 1, 2008

Gambling Rules

FL - The Florida Supreme Court is telling Governor Charlie Crist he had no authority to allow the Seminole Tribe of Florida to start offering Blackjack or other card games that are illegal in the state. / Frank Ranicky / Jul 3, 2008

Gambling stocks tumble on economic woes

- If the stock market were a casino, investors in Las Vegas gambling stocks would be the bleary-eyed guy in the wrinkled suit watching helplessly as the dealer plucks chips from the felt. Nine of 10 stocks on an index of publicly traded gambling companies lost value in June, including a 19 percent decline for shares in Las Vegas Sands Corp., the company that owns two of the swankiest resorts in Las Vegas. / Las Vegas Review / By BENJAMIN SPILLMAN / Jul. 01, 2008

Gilmer business raided in gambling investigation

TX - Gambling locations in Upshur County have until mid-July to close their doors before action is taken, District Attorney Billy Byrd said Thursday. A Gilmer business, Gilmer E-Center, was raided Wednesday, and an Ore City operation voluntarily closed the same day after hearing about the raid, Byrd said. "I'm not going to allow those types of criminal acts to go unchecked," Byrd said. / By CHRISTINA LANE / July 04, 2008

Governors in Several Key States Continue to Push Lottery Privatization

- California had been perhaps the closest to taking its lottery private. Facing a multibillion-dollar long-term budget shortfall, state legislative leaders were set to consider Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R) proposal to lease the lottery to the highest bidder for what he said could have been "a $37 billion solution" to the state's "shortfall situation." Several California legislators, however, accused the governor of being too optimistic with his revenue projections. He then changed his proposal to have the state borrow against future lottery revenues rather than take the lottery private. / The Heartland Institute / By: John W. Skorburg / July 1, 2008

Hard Rock abandons porn gaming pit

NV - Early last month, I broke the news on the Buffet that the Hard Rock and adult star Tera Patrick had cut an unprecedented deal to transform part of the gaming floor of the casino to have tables branded under Patrick's name. Then nothing happened. Today I reached out to the Hard Rock to find out the status of the Tera Patrick Gaming Pit and received this wonderfully political reply: "Tera Patrick will continue to be involved with Hard Rock, just not with the gaming floor/Hell's Belles. The Hard Rock has decided to take a different direction because yes, there is a higher demand to see her and hence we are making her appearances more exclusive to attract a higher clientele. Hard Rock makes clear that it hopes to realize a higher clientele through porn. / Jul 1 2008

Harvard Proves Gaming's Best Friend With Casino-Funded Research

MA - Howard Shaffer is a researcher at Harvard University, whose $34.9 billion endowment makes it the world's richest school. His work on gambling addiction is funded instead by dimes and nickels fed into slot machines. Shaffer and the institute he heads have received $9.1 million in industry money since 1996. The funding is part of a practice of corporate support at Harvard under fire from critics who say industry backing clouds the legitimacy of research. Close ties like this with industry can lead to a bias called ``the funding effect'', said Merrill Goozner, director of the Integrity in Science Project of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington-based advocacy group, in a June 19 phone interview. ``You don't bite the hand that feeds you. ``They've gotten Harvard for cheap,'' said Grey of the National Coalition Against Legalized Gambling. ``They've used him to keep the government from looking at gambling.'' / By Oliver Staley / July 2, 2008

High court: Crist overstepped on casino deal

FL - The Florida Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Gov. Charlie Crist overstepped his authority when he unilaterally allowed the Seminole Tribe to exclusively offer baccarat and blackjack at their casinos. But the games will go on, at least for now, while the tribe mulls its options during the heavy-betting July 4 weekend. The big winner: Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, an anti-gambling West Miami Republican who filed suit in November, saying Crist needed the Legislature's approval of the deal he struck with the tribe. ''The governor does not have the constitutional authority to bind the state to a gaming compact that clearly departs from the state's public policy by legalizing types of gaming that are illegal everywhere else in the state,'' the opinion said. Rubio hailed the decision as a ''victory for our constitutional system of checks and balances.'' He told The Miami Herald that Crist should entirely scrap talk of table games with the tribe and figure a way to allow the Seminoles to have Las Vegas-style slot machines at its seven casino properties throughout the state. In return, the tribe would give the state a cut of its slot-machine money. / MIAMI HERALD / By MARC CAPUTO, EVAN S. BENN AND AMY DRISCOLL / Jul. 03, 2008

Ho-Chunk miss early deadline to pay Wis. $72M

WI - The Ho-Chunk tribe has missed a preliminary budge deadline to pay the state about $72 million in gambling payments. / Associated Press / June 30, 2008

Illegal 'Dominican lottery' in US shut down

NY - US authorities continued to investigate an estimated $10 million to $12 million yearly lottery gambling ring as they revised the amount of cash seized during a series of raids. / 29 June 2008

Illegal Gambling Crackdown in Ohio

OH - A crackdown on what police say are illegal gambling operations may now lead to new legislation. City officials say some gambling operations are finding ways to circumvent current laws, so they want to turn it up a notch to get some of these establishments shut down. The prosecutor says, as for businesses that run illegal operations, he wants to get the law changed, forcing those establishments to have a license to operate. "Because the police have gone in and closed four of these businesses the operations now are closing their doors. They're requiring memberships to enter the store. They're only dealing their regular and their known customers and so vice has not been able to, at this point, get into some of these locations." Licensing would give the city access to businesses records, their auditing, and their games where they post their rules. / 01 Jul 2008

Illinois smoking ban sends casino revenues down

IL - On Jan. 1, a smoking ban went into effect in the state of Illinois... As a result of the ban, Illinois riverboat casino revenues have dropped significantly compared to the same time last year. In May of 2008, adjusted gross receipts for Illinois riverboat casinos dropped more than 14 percent compared to the same month in 2007... / Dave Waddell / July 2, 2008

Initiatives may make or break casinos

CO - Summer is typically the busiest time of year for casinos, but the consensus on Cripple Creek's Bennett Avenue is that the gaming industry won't truly warm up until voters say yea or nay on initiatives 121 and 122 this fall. The initiatives would allow casinos to offer higher $100 limits, new table games including craps and roulette and longer hours. / THE GAZETTE / BY ANDREW WINEKE / July 4, 2008

Is Kansas killing the golden goose?

KS - The mob got squeezed out of the gambling industry a couple of decades ago, but apparently not in Kansas. Bugsy Siegel and his Las Vegas mobster pals never dreamed of looting casinos to the degree the Sunflower Mob in Topeka plans to rake it in at the state's racetracks. And because of the apparently boundless greed of the Kansas Legislature, don't be surprised if there's never slot machine gambling at The Woodlands. Track operators and state officials still haven't come to contract terms on a division of the spoils at a Woodlands Race Park racino, and its starting to look as if they may never. Ruffin said at the time the state's massive tax bite on racetrack slots just didn't leave enough cash flow to turn a fair profit. / by Rick Alm / June 30, 2008

Jefferson County Police Continue Raids On Illegal Gambling Rooms

PA - Raids on illegal gambling operations have become commonplace across the United States. In Jefferson County, authorities have made it very clear that anyone who is running these illegal gambling rooms is going to get busted. Another illegal gambling operation was raided by police on Wednesday afternoon. / By Tom Jones / July 4, 2008

Gov. Jindal vetoes 3 gambling bills


Judge nearing decision on suit to block Seneca casino in Buffalo

NY - A federal judge has alerted parties in the high-stakes legal battle over Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino that he'll issue a decision in the case on or before July 8. U. S. District Court Judge William M. Skretny will rule on whether the Seneca Nation of Indians has the right to operate a casino on a nine-acre site in Buffalo's Cobblestone District. The lawsuit claims procedural errors were made by the U. S. Department of the Interior and the National Indian Gaming Commission in conferring "sovereign territory" status on the Buffalo parcel, which opened the door to Native American gambling operations. / Buffalo News / By Sharon Linstedt / 06/30/08

Kansas Lottery reports wrong winning numbers due to software glitch

KS - Because of a software glitch, the Kansas Lottery reported the wrong winning numbers this week for its Pick 3 game on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. / Jul. 03, 2008

Kansas casino partner quits

KS - One of the partners in a Wyandotte County casino proposal dropped out of the running Monday. Mohegan Resorts Kansas, LLC, a subsidiary of the Connecticut-based Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, said Monday it has acquired for an undisclosed sum the one-third interest in the proposed Legends Sun casino project held by Las Vegas-based Olympia Gaming. / by Rick Alm / June 30, 2008

Las Vegas Casinos Have Been On A Roll - But Luck May Be About To Run Out

NV - Charles Barkley, a retired basketball player, was forced to pay a gambling debt of $400,000 owed to Wynn Resorts, a Las Vegas casino operator. / June 30, 2008

Las Vegas company sells stake in Wyandotte County casino proposal

NV - One of the partners in a Wyandotte County casino proposal dropped out of the running Monday. Mohegan Resorts Kansas LLC, a subsidiary of the Connecticut-based Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, said Monday it has acquired for an undisclosed sum the one-third interest in the proposed Legends Sun casino project held by Las Vegas-based Olympia Gaming. / The Kansas City Star / By RICK ALM / Jun. 30, 2008

Laws are purposely mangled to permit gambling

NY - On June 25, a struggle took place in the House of Representatives involving casino gambling that is highly pertinent to Buffalo. Reps. John Dingell and John Conyers fought from opposing corners. Dingell wants an Indian casino in Port Huron, but wanted to "legislatively" bypass Department of Interior review. Conyers argued that would be wrong. After vigorous debate, an overwhelming majority defeated the attempt, 121 to 298. / By John J. LaFalce / 07/01/08

Legislature bends rules on gambling and mocks the state constitution

NY - The New York Constitution prohibits gambling but allows an exception for a lottery provided (1) it is operated by the state and (2) the net proceeds are used exclusively for education. The Legislature enacted a law permitting a private developer... To relocate the Monticello Raceway there and take 75 percent of the net machine revenue from the operation of the video lottery terminals to be installed... / CORNELIUS D. MURRAY / July 1, 2008

Lodi Mother Son Duo Arrested In Lottery Scam

CA - Luck runs out for a local lottery retailer and her son who are now under arrest and accused of withholding thousands of dollars worth of winnings from their customers. The two work at a Quik Stop Market convenience store in Lodi, and were arrested by lottery officials as part of a statewide sting. / Elyce Kirchner / 6-30-08


MA - Harvard University research endowments of $34.9 billion make it the world's richest school, claims an interesting article by Oliver Staley in Bloombergs business news this week, which reveals that since 1996 up to $9.1 million of this financial support has come from the gambling industry in its fight against problem gambling. Howard Shaffer and the [gambling research] institute he heads at Harvard has used the money to fund important research into addictive behaviour, but critics have claimed that industry backing clouds the legitimacy of his research. Close ties like this with industry can lead to a bias called "the funding effect'', said Merrill Goozner, director of the Integrity in Science Project of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington-based advocacy group. There also is pressure on professors to garner corporate sponsors because universities evaluate academics by how much outside research money they bring in, Goozner said. / July 03, 2008

Maine slots parlor moving to permanent home

ME - Maine's only slots facility is authorized to have 1,500 slot machines but will begin operation with 1,000. They include 525 new machines and 475 that have been in use at the temporary gaming parlor in the former Miller's Restaurant; those will be moved across Main Street, about a quarter-mile away. A voter-approved referendum in 2003 set the stage for the arrival of slots in Maine. / The Associated Press / By JERRY HARKAVY / June 29, 2008

Man enters plea in theft from friend

PA - Stealing $45,000 from Boylan's accounts while Boylan was in a nursing home in Camp Hill. "He has a gambling problem," / The Patriot-News / BY MATT MILLER / July 02, 2008

Most casino work stops until contractors paid

PA - Most work at the Majestic Star Casino site will stop until owner Don Barden comes up with the money he needs to finish the project. Barden announced Monday -- for the second time in six weeks -- that investors have committed all the money he needs to build Pittsburgh's lone casino. He has said he needs $780 million. / TRIBUNE-REVIEW / By Andrew Conte and Mike Wereschagin / July 1, 2008

NJ appeals court upholds Tropicana license denial

NJ - A New Jersey appeals court has upheld the denial of the Tropicana Casino and Resort's license in Atlantic City. / The Associated Press / Jul 1, 2008

National GOP attacks Adler for 'unethical' contributions

NJ - The National Republican Congressional Committee attacked Democratic 3rd Congressional District candidate John Adler as unethical Tuesday for accepting past federal campaign contributions from casino executives and PACs. The Republican committee criticized the contributions because Adler is and was a state senator when the casinos donated to a past U.S. Senate campaign. Casinos are not allowed to donate to state campaigns. / July 02, 2008

National business news in brief: Penn National Gaming buyout is off

PA - Two investment firms pulled the plug Thursday on their $5.82 billion acquisition of Penn National Gaming Inc. after the racetrack and casino operator's stock price tumbled. But they will pay for pulling out. Penn National will get $225 million in cash as a termination fee, plus $1.25 billion in what amounts to no-cost capital until 2015. / Jul. 03, 2008

Nevada trio help kill Michigan casino plan

DC - Rep. Shelley Berkley was poised by a main door to the House chamber last week as representatives began filing in for a vote on a Michigan gaming bill, handing out pink fliers as if she were running for student body president. Her printouts contained arguments against the gaming bill and came with a verbal admonition: Vote no. Berkley swirled around to read the vote tally on the electronic board. The bill was being handily defeated. Opponents argued that the legislation would create an unchecked expansion of tribal gaming by skirting federal tribal gaming law and giving Congress the power to determine new casino sites. The final tally: 121-298. A blowout. / By Lisa Mascaro / Jul 2, 2008

New laws include low-stakes gambling in bars

IN - Fans of pull tabs and other low-stakes gambling could soon take their chances at their favorite watering hole under one of dozens of state laws that take effect Tuesday. / AP / By MIKE SMITH / June 30, 2008


NC - North Carolina lawmakers this week voted for a bill that tightens up the state video poker ban, applying it to slot-like games played by visitors to online sweepstake websites. Associated Press reports that North Carolina ended its 14-year experiment with legal video poker in July 2007 after lawmakers finally agreed to eliminate the machines. Sheriffs complained that machines were offering big cash jackpots, while others argued low-income people were spending too much money on the games of chance. / July 02, 2008

Our Views: Jindal stops new casino

LA - One of the things that Govs. Kathleen Blanco and Bobby Jindal agree upon is that gambling is not part of Louisiana's economic future. Both governors pledged to stop the expansion of gambling in the state, and now Jindal - like Blanco before him - has cast his gubernatorial veto to stop new gambling businesses. / Jul 5, 2008

Pastor gets 3 years' jail for fake lottery scheme

NJ - The former pastor of a Washington Borough, N.J., church was sentenced Thursday to three years in state prison for concocting a fake lottery-style scheme to raise money for the church. Ascolese purchased unsold tickets under fictitious names that ''won'' each lottery from 2001 through 2005. He issued checks to the fictitious winners and cashed them. Winning ticket money was turned over to the church treasury. Ascolese apologized for any harm that came to the diocese. / The Morning Call / By Jay Richards / July 4, 2008

Penn National says takeover deal terminated

PA - Casino and racetrack operator Penn National Gaming Inc (PENN.O) said on Thursday its $6.1 billion takeover pact has been terminated, marking the latest leveraged buyout to crumble amid the tight credit markets and weak U.S. economy. "Since the deal was announced, credit went from being a big driver of these types of acquisitions to being a hurdle for a lot of them," said Majestic Research analyst Matthew Jacob. "It became a less attractive collection of assets based on the price that had to be paid, the financing, and the kind of multiple given the more recent results for the underlying properties," Jacob said. "The gaming industry is challenging right now." / Reuters / July 3, 2008

Penn National's $5.82 billion takeover is off

PA - Two investment firms pulled the plug Thursday on their $5.82 billion acquisition of Penn National Gaming Inc. after the racetrack and casino operator's stock price tumbled. But they will pay for pulling out. Penn National, the owner of the Argosy Casino in Alton, will get $225 million in cash as a termination fee, plus $1.25 billion in what amounts to no-cost capital until 2015. The company said its board was unwilling to negotiate a reduced price, and the settlement was preferable to suing the buyers to force the acquisition. / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS / By Deborah Yao / 07/04/2008

Pennsylvania Firm Might Buy Possible Md. Slots Site

MD - Penn National Gaming, a major casino operator, is considering buying a site in Cecil County that could become one of five slots venues in Maryland and might throw its support behind a November referendum on legalizing the machines, a company official said yesterday. Penn National is one of the country's largest gaming companies, with casino-style operations and racetracks in the United States and Canada, including Charles Town Races and Slots in West Virginia. Neither Magna Entertainment, which owns Laurel Park, nor William Rickman, a Potomac developer who owns Ocean Downs, has publicly pledged financial support for the ballot-issue committee campaigning to legalize slots. / Washington Post / By John Wagner / July 3, 2008

Poker Players Alliance: "Heads are Going to Roll" Says One Washington Insider

DC - "They promised 15 Republicans would be supporting H.R. 5767, then it was down to 10, 7, and when the vote finally came in on Wednesday, there was just ONE Republican who voted for the measure," said's authoritative Washington insider, whose eyes and ears are everywhere on Capital Hill. He referred to the powerful million plus member strong Poker Players Alliance, and its ineffectiveness at mustering up enough support among Republicans in the House. The PPA - while their intentions are good - has been behind the ball on many issues... / Christopher Costigan / June 29, 2008

Powerball Lottery Could Help Or Hurt Florida Schools

FL - Florida is set to join the Powerball lottery in January 2009... Schools would wind up relying more than ever on gambling. / July 04, 2008

Quick resolution needed on gambling

FL - Gov. Charlie Crist rolled the dice and lost. The Florida Supreme Court's unanimous opinion that the governor exceeded his authority by signing a compact with the Seminole Tribe allowing gambling that is otherwise illegal was not entirely unexpected. This messy situation is what happens when a governor says one thing about working with a co-equal branch of government and does another. Crist bet against the House and lost. / A Times Editorial / July 6, 2008

Ravenstahl wary of delaying casino's riverfront plan

PA - Mayor Luke Ravenstahl is worried that delaying a boat dock and outdoor path next to the Majestic Star Casino will hurt the quality of Pittsburgh's riverfront. "I am aware that these changes were proposed in an effort to cut costs," Ravenstahl wrote Wednesday in a letter... Through his architects Tuesday, casino owner Don Barden asked the city Planning Commission to let him delay the start of construction on the $3.5 million dock, amphitheater and walkway until three years after the North Shore casino opens. / TRIBUNE-REVIEW / By Jeremy Boren / July 3, 2008

Report: State's gambling take comprised 2.9% of budget in '06

NY - "For more than two decades, states saw lotteries and casinos as a bonanza of new dollars for education and other programs," the authors wrote. "Gambling revenue is now at an all-time high, but growth is slowing due to objections about social impacts and broader economic trends. "Many states have turned to gambling revenue as a means of balancing budgets in recent years," said Robert B. Ward, deputy director of the Rockefeller Institute and co-author of the gambling revenue study. "Gambling has been a fiscal winner for state governments, but the bonanza years may be ending. Continued resistance to gambling and softness in the industry mean that most states have to look elsewhere to solve this year's budget problems." / By Tom Wanamaker / July 5, 2008

Review W.Va. Gambling Laws

WV - West Virginia's system - if it can be called that - of regulating legalized gambling is a hodgepodge administered by three separate state agencies. That is merely a symptom of larger problems, however. A substantial portion of the codebook on legalized gambling was written by - you guessed it - the gambling industry. West Virginians cannot count upon it to guide the Legislature to enact laws in our best interests. / By the News-Register / June 29, 2008

Robbers Hit Casino at Louisiana Truck Stop

LA - The Relay Station, a truck stop on Highway 1 in Caddo Parish, Louisiana, also hosts a slot parlor known as Ace in the Hole Casino. Despite the reputation of truck stops as a refuge for burly men usually well-armed, a gang of robbers decided the cash piling up at the casino was too tempting to pass up. / by A.J. Maldonado / July 1, 2008

Room tax plan OK'd

NV - Voters will be asked in November whether hotels should pay a lodging tax to offset $260 million in reduced funding for local schools expected in the next two years. Clark County commissioners Tuesday approved a ballot question for the Nov. 4 election that will gauge voters' opinions about imposing a room tax of up to 3 percent on hotels. The straw ballot and proposed tax were touted as a joint effort between three major casino companies and an education employees' union. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / By SCOTT WYLAND / Jul. 02, 2008

Roseburg theft convict gets 14 years

OR - In March 2006, Gabbard pleaded guilty to nine counts of aggravated theft involving some $90,000 worth of utility trailers he stole from his employer, Morgan Built, Inc., in 2004. Gabbard claimed he wanted to get treatment for a gambling addiction... The man was told if he violated his probation, he would face the full sentence... / NRToday / June 28, 2008

Schwarzenegger Signs Compact with Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians

CA - The compact will run through 2029 and allow a maximum of 5,000 slot machines at one gaming facility. Under the terms of the amended compact, the tribe will share revenues with the state based on a sliding scale percentage of net win from the operation of slot machines, ranging from 20 percent to 25 percent. / Imperial Valley News / 01 July 2008

Slot machine bill is dead for this year

MA - The slot machine bill is dead, for this year anyway. State Rep. David L. Flynn, D-Bridgewater, said the Senate refused to allow action on the measure to legalize slots at the state's four race tracks, but he's not giving up. / GateHouse News / Jun 29, 2008

Slots and Gas Prices Whittle Downeast Towns' Bingo

ME - Bingo attendance and revenue are dwindling and organizers are blaming the lure of slot machines in Bangor... The loss is especially acute in small towns where bingo money is essential to certain community projects and operations. Joseph Welsh, until very recently president of the Sorrento-Sullivan center, said bingo revenue is down from about $40,000 to $20,000 over the last two years. Just last week, there were 45 people in attendance instead of the usual 70, he said. And people are spending less. / by Jacqueline Weaver / July 03, 2008

Smoking ban gets mixed reviews on first day

IA - Across the state, business owners and customers were having similar discussions as the ban approved by lawmakers and signed by Gov. Chet Culver goes into effect at most workplaces, restaurants and bars. The law exempts casinos, fairgrounds and veterans organizations. Many bar and restaurant owners have complained that it wasn't fair to have different rules for different sites, and some have raised money to fund a lawsuit that seeks to strip the law of the exemptions. / Associated Press / By AMY LORENTZEN / July 2, 2008

Sparks pair sought in alleged embezzlement

NV - Embezzled more than $67,000... Fraudulent checks... Detectives said the checks were cashed at casinos and deposits made at a local bank. / July 4, 2008

State to underwrite counseling for gamblers

PA - The department's Bureau of Drug and Alcohol Programs has invited therapists with gambling-specific training to become state-approved providers. They could be reimbursed at $65 an hour for up to 20 outpatient sessions treating those with gambling problems or their family members, or $20 for group sessions. / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / By Gary Rotstein / July 2, 2008

State's gambling push outrageous

IL - The Senate in the final hours of the session passed HB 2651 which would create three new casinos, put slot machines at race tracks, allow betting on horse races on the Internet, etc. There is almost no mention in the press of this 800-pound-gorilla-gambling bill. Legislators are staying very quiet on the subject. / Beth Paschall / 7/3/2008

State: One in six Pennsylvanians played slots

PA - The state Health Department has begun collecting data on Pennsylvanians' gambling habits... Nearly half - 48 percent - of households with an income above $35,000 reported gambling, compared with 38 percent in households earning less, the survey found. Women also played more slots than men by about a 3-2 margin. / 07/01/2008

Store Owner Arrested In Gambling Sting

FL - The alcoholic beverage licensee of the convenience store, ran two electronic gambling machines and provided cash payouts from the machines to customers. He also sold illegal drug paraphernalia to an undercover investigator... / July 1, 2008

SugarHouse developer eyes a role in Pittsburgh

PA - Neil G. Bluhm, the Chicago billionaire who is bankrolling the development of a $700 million slots parlor on the Philadelphia waterfront, is pursuing a deal to help Don Barden financially in building his casino in Pittsburgh, according to a partner of Bluhm's.Stymied by legal controversy and neighborhood opposition in Philadelphia, Bluhm now is looking to expand his casino holdings in another part of the state. / Inquirer / By Suzette Parmley / Jul. 1, 2008


- Pay your taxes or forfeit your gambling winnings is the essence of new state laws in Iowa and Colorado that came into effect this week. / July 02, 2008

Texas assistant principal running gambling ring

TX - During the raid the police found 40-50 people inside, poker tables, cards, chips, over $4,000 in cash, as well as small quantity of cocaine. / 07/01/2008

The Indian gambling non deal: What did Schwarzenegger know and when did he know it?

CA - The Sycuan Indian tribe "has avoided paying the cash-strapped state $30 million in gambling profits." The money is supposed to be paid at the end of July as part of the deal that we voters approved allowing four Indian tribes to expand their casinos for which they would pay to the state a larger share of the take. The state that is more than $15 billion in the hole. The state whose governor told the Sycuans that they could wait to pay the $30 million after "the Sycuan gave $45,000 to the campaign for a November redistricting initiative promoted by Schwarzenegger," the Los Angeles Times reported. "Quid" meet "Quo?" "Sycuan spokesman Adam Day called the timing of the donation "a total coincidence," the Times story informed. Pretty much ditto from the governor's office. / By Alejandro Benes / June 30, 2008

Third Gambling Shop Coming To Port Canaveral

FL - The Canaveral Port Authority said the Liquid Vegas ship will arrive Tuesday and start offshore gambling excursions by July 15. / June 30, 2008

Tribal Battle Begins Over Casino Revenue Sharing In California

CA - A tribal battle has begun in the state of California. Fifty members of the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians have stopped receiving casino revenue share payments. The San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians are claiming that the fifty members are not real Indians. / By Tom Jones / June 29, 2008

Tribe Plans Casino On Lake Oahe

SD - The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe plans to build a casino on the shore of Lake Oahe, in Stanley County. / Associated Press / 07/02/2008

Tribe plans casino

SD - The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe plans to build a casino on the shore of Lake Oahe, in Stanley County. / Associated Press / July 2, 2008

Tribe: We'll consider paying taxes

IA - The Ponca Tribe of Nebraska is willing to consider paying Iowa gambling taxes if state officials drop their opposition to a proposed $250 million tribal casino in Carter Lake in western Iowa, a tribal leader said Monday. Iowa's state-regulated riverboat casinos pay a state tax rate of 22 percent upon gross gambling revenue... "We believe very strongly that it is inevitable" that the tribal casino will be eventually built in Carter Lake, Wright said... / By WILLIAM PETROSKI / July 1, 2008

Tropicana tower to reopen after E. coli discovery

NV - The Tropicana's Island Tower, which the company voluntarily closed Monday after traces of a potentially dangerous bacteria were found in well water used by hotel customers, should reopen later today, the Strip hotel-casino said Wednesday. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / By ARNOLD M. KNIGHTLY / Jul. 03, 2008

Trump Plaza Unwittingly Promotes Benefits of Online Gambling

NJ - Automated poker tables, with a computerized dealer sitting in for the normal human one, have set up shop at the Atlantic City casino. Fourteen tables designed by PokerPro can accomodate up to ten players. The advantage to the house is, of course, cost. In these unionized times, computer dealers require no salary, no benefits package. / By Brian Chan / June 28, 2008

Two Clergymen Face Charges of Embezzlement

FL - Authorities say the pair spent more than $400,000 in church money on gambling... / July 2, 2008

U.S. casinos enter summer time in bad shape

- U.S. casinos enter summer time in bad shape Are the casinos recession-proof - gambling experts say "no" as they rush to sell the stocks of the U.S. gambling giants. People have always believed that no matter what, gambling will continue to thrive, but the recent financial reports from the gambling companies the like of Harrah's Entertainment and the string of bankruptcy filings have cooled off the once hot commodity. / 07/01/2008

Upshur County District Attorney Waging War On Wagering

TX - In what he called an "open letter to Upshur County" released Monday, Byrd gave all illegal wagering operations - such as those with eight-liner machines and Internet cafes - until July 15 to shut down or face legal consequences. Those could include possible incarceration and financial penalties, he said. He wrote that state law prohibits knowingly using or permitting another to use real estate, a building, room or any property whatsoever as "a gambling place." / Tyler Morning Telegraph / By PHILLIP WILLIAMS / July 02, 2008

Vegas casino: Lawsuit against NBA was mistake

NV - Casino spokeswoman Jennifer Dunne of the Wynn Las Vegas said the lawsuit seeking payment from the NBA and a player's charity should have only been filed against Alonzo Mourning Charities, Inc., not against NBA Entertainment and NBA Properties. / The Associated Press / By Oskar Garcia / June 29, 2008

Video maker sued by LV hotel

NV - Scratch the NBA, but add "Girls Gone Wild" founder Joe Francis to Steve Wynn's short list -- short on funds that is. Wynn Las Vegas, which sued June 12 seeking payment for an outstanding bill for a fundraiser that took place during last year's All-Star Weekend, has been paid in full by an unnamed party, property spokeswoman Jennifer Dunne said Monday. But on Friday, the Strip resort sued Francis, saying the 35-year-old owner of the video franchise featuring college students in sexually provocative situations, owes the company $2 million in unpaid gambling debts dating back to February 2007. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / By ARNOLD M. KNIGHTLY / Jul. 01, 2008

Wachovia, Deutsche Bank Bring End to Penn National Deal

PA - Facing immense losses on a flailing private-equity deal, Wachovia Corp. and Deutsche Bank helped engineer a negotiated end to the $6.1 privatization of Penn National Gaming Inc. by Fortress Investment Group and Centerbridge Partners LP. By extending an olive branch instead of serving a lawsuit, Penn will receive $1.45 billion -- $225 million in cash and $1.25 billion in a preferred-shares investment from Fortress and Centerbridge. / By PETER LATTMAN / July 4, 2008

Why were lotto tickets marketed to kids in the first place? | Rep. Dan Roach

WA - The Washington State Problem Gambling Web site,, highlights the seriousness of youth gambling. On the average, it says problem gamblers began gambling at about 10 years of age. It also notes that kids who gamble are twice as likely to use illegal drugs, three times more likely to drink alcohol and to be in a gang fight, and four times more likely to smoke cigarettes and to get in trouble with police. With these statistics in mind, you would think the Washington Lottery Commission would do all that it could to prevent children from purchasing lottery tickets. Instead, it is doing the unthinkable - marketing the types of scratch tickets that could entice children into gambling. / July 02, 2008

Will casino gambling be a boon or a menace?

KS - Kansas legislators and Gov. Kathleen Sebelius likely are breathing a sigh of relief following Friday's announcement that the Kansas Supreme Court had upheld the state's expanded gambling law. That's because some of the money the state expects to collect from four state-owned resort casinos essentially has already been spent to balance the state budget... / The Lawrence Journal-World / Jul 02, 2008

Woman Pleads Guilty To Running Illegal Gambling House

OH - Bingo parlors operate all over northeast Ohio, but not all of them are legal. The city prosecutor in Akron is hoping for new legislation to curb a problem that is apparently getting out of control... "This is all a scam, it's a front. The whole thing is a scheme to get people to come in, give their money and think that they're playing a slot machine. / July 1, 2008