Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said the decision “could come at any moment” but then added that it could still be weeks away.Sounds familiar, don't it? “There is no timetable or deadline for the decision, but as the governor indicated last week, he expects a final decision soon," has been a familiar refrain from the Paterson administration regarding the Big A racino. Gibbs of course was talking about the timetable for President Obama making a determination on Afghanistan.
I wonder which decision will come first. And what kind of odds I could get on the proposition over in the UK. And what's the before/after date now? There was a time when before Labor Day seemed a sure thing, imagine that. I reported last week that this could be the week, and perhaps it still will be. But I also reported that new information from the bidders was due last week; and who knows what kind of new potential issues could have surfaced?
A couple of other propositions worth considering: Who will break the news of the winner first? I make Tom Precious the favorite at 3-4, Odato at 7-5, Danny Hakim 5-1, Elizabeth Benjamin 10-1, Hegarty 10-1, Paul Post 15-1, Left at the Gate 99-1. And I put the over/under on how many more articles that Post can cook up before something actually happens at five.
A reader sent along the text of a couple of letters to the editor in response to an Oct 11 editorial in Crain's that endorsed the SL Green group (subscription only). One is written by Wynn Resorts' Senior VP and General Counsel Kim Sinatra, in response to the column's contention that Wynn, though he brings "glitz," "faltered with a similar project in Mississippi." She claims that the Beau Rivage is "the highest-grossing casino in its market, and "currently outpaces the
brand-new Hard Rock Casino, built less than a mile away."
Wynn Resorts' 40-year track record of success in the gaming industry is not based upon “glitz.” Our success is based on attention to detail, keen financial analysis and a deep understanding of local regions. In every market where Wynn Resorts is in competition with the Hard Rock brand, we have outperformed them, producing approximately 10 times more in gaming revenue.That last line sure sounds like something Wynn would say. I must say, as a blogger wondering what he's going to blog about once this thing is finally over, that Wynn has the most potential to provide future fodder for fun. I find that he's just a bit off kilter....and his grandiose plan for Aqueduct is more than just a bit off; it's just a plain pisser. I noticed that Ms. Sinatra had no response to Crain's contention that "his plans overshoot the market." (Anyone have any insight on the veracity of her claim that they out-produce Hard Rock 'approximately 10 times?')
Moreover, Wynn Resorts recently completed an initial public offering of a portion of our Macau operations, generating proceeds of approximately $1.9 billion, giving us free cash for more commitment to New York. Bottom line: We don't have to shop for credit.
A couple of notes on SL Green's two main partners: I wonder what the presence of Jeff Gural does for their chances. Gural has been a pain in the neck as far as at least some legislators are concerned; he was one of the driving forces in the racinos getting a bigger share of revenues last year. (And who could argue that the increase in marketing allowances isn't at least partly responsible for the New York racinos' resiliency in the face of the poor economy over the last year?)
And of course, the Hard Rock comes with the Seminoles, and this reader, referencing the ongoing situation in Florida, offers that they are "not exactly a desirable partner to government officials.....Do we really want these guys operating in New York State?" I've periodically followed the situation there where the tribe has been operating its blackjack games in violation of state law, and in the strange netherland of Federal Indian regulations. With talks over Governor Crist's latest compact proposal stalled, the Florida House of Representatives last week formally asked the federal government to shut the games down. I wouldn't hold my breath considering that the state Attorney General Bill McCollum unsuccessfully went down that route just about a year ago. McCollum wrote to the same National Indian Gaming Commission that House Speaker Larry Cretul did. Different chairman now, but my guess is that the result will be the same. Maybe they should try the wildcat formation.
- For those of you who are interested....and apparently, there are some....only 338 days until the 2010 Ryder Cup on Oct 1, 2010 in Wales!
- Marian Gaborik Completes a Marian Gaborik Hat Trick reads the headline on New York Magazine's Sports Section blog. "Two goals, an assist, and an injury." Very funny.