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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

$370 Million Becomes The Standard

- Looks like the $370 million upfront fee which was offered and accepted, above and beyond the $250 million originally requested, by Delaware North for Aqueduct VLT's, has become the new standard in the state. Governor Paterson's budget proposal includes that same number, to be raised from the establishment of VLT's at Belmont. So here we go again. As in the past, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver stands as the main impediment; though with the Senate picture unclear, one can't say for sure. However, with the so-called "millionaires tax" which Silver favors conspicuously absent from the proposal (as opposed to all of the regressive taxes and fees that are included), there should be a lot of negotiating room with the Speaker over a wide range of matters.

The only thing I've seen in the budget that I like thus far is the proposal to allow the sale of wine in supermarkets! Er, of course, he wants to raise the tax rate on beer and wine as well, so....

Check out the "Revenue Actions" page. The budget includes $1 million for 'Horse Entrance Fees,' which I presume is for entering your horse in a race, not for bringing your pet steed into a state park. Probably something else for that somewhere in here. The governor also proposes to eliminate any restrictions on the hours of operation of the state's VLT parlors and to allow for more interstate lottery games. There's also a one year delay in that onerous 1% hike in the pari-mutuel take on out-of-state simulcasts which I don't think will ever come to pass.

Other proposed taxes of interest are those proposed on sporting events (admission to tracks included?), movies, gym memberships, and digital music (rush to Itunes now). And a lot of others too, which we'll be reading and hearing about in the next few days/weeks/months. Not to mention the cuts, and more cuts. Not a pretty picture to be sure. But what else could we expect?

6 Comments:

jk said...

http://www.cnbc.com/id/28254547

Big Brown Owner: Losing Belmont Cost Us At Least $50 million

Anonymous said...

okay you had the mount fee in this post, but you are still wrong about CK.

Anonymous said...

$10 per start charged to the horse owner goes to the state. Also, contained in the proposed Belmont Bill authorizing VLT's, there will be NO $$$$ allocated to purses, breeder funds or capex from the VLT's at Belmont Park, only from those at Aqueduct! NYRA really did the horsemen and breeders proud if this is the way the Bill looks, if and when it gets passed. NYRA agreeing to get no VLT subsidy for its operations from Belmont must mean that perhaps it ends up with the NYCOTB, although just my guess and not a part of the Bill. The Belmont Park VLT operator will get 5.5% more than the Aqueduct operator based its original bid on, but DelNorth's percentage will be increased to be the same as Belmonts if the Bill passes. Can that be fair to the other VLT bidders at Aqueduct if DelNorth was truly an administration favorite and sensed this percentage recalculation would be a part of capitulating to neighboring VLT's at Belmont? What concerns me is that if there is only VLT capex subsidy coming from one source, then it will be impossible to rennovate two backsides and racing facilities, so say goodbye, soon enough to the Big A's racetrack and backside community.

alan said...

>>Also, contained in the proposed Belmont Bill authorizing VLT's, there will be NO $$$$ allocated to purses, breeder funds or capex from the VLT's at Belmont Park, only from those at Aqueduct!

Can you please refer us to where you're getting this info?

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Alan,

From a synopsis of the proposed Belmont VLT Bill and legislative intent of the passage. Some contact of yours in Albany should have the same.

Anonymous said...

Allen, the above mentioned by anonymous is absolutely incorrect regarding:

"NO $$$$ allocated to purses, breeder funds or capex from the VLT's at Belmont Park only from those at Aqueduct!"

Trust me I am staring at the bill.