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Monday, February 01, 2010

Structuring An Agreement

Larry Woolf, the president of Navegante Group, the gaming component of the winning Aqueduct Entertainment Group bid, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the next phase of the process is negotiating a memorandum of understanding with New York's state lottery authorities.

He expects talks will take up to two months with the casino opening coming about six months later.

Part of the negotiations, Woolf said, will be the payment structure of an upfront franchise fee of $300 million, a condition set by the speaker of New York's state Assembly.
Payment structure?? I thought it was same day fed funds, an upfront payment due by the end of the current fiscal year ending March 31? Y'know, like Penn National said they would do. That's the kind of language which makes one feel that they don't have the cash on hand. And the governor said that the talks would take 30 days, not two months. Hmmm, MOU's.....structuring payments....protracted negotiations......this is already starting to sound familiar.

The article also notes that "Several Wall Street analysts were surprised the Aqueduct contract wasn't awarded to a large casino operator." So it's not just us. And there's some speculation of some legal action by the losers, but I agree with this reader, who points out that the state gave fair warning that it would conduct the process by rules which were subject to change at its whim. They all willingly played the game when they thought they could win.

Woolf also says that the first 3,000 machines will be installed within the present plant.
The additional 1,500 games would be added in a new phase, along with additional entertainment amenities and a 300-room hotel.
So, no slots in a box here. We'll just have to agree to disagree on this one. I respect all of your opinions, but I just don't see this kind of complex thriving in Ozone Park. Hopefully, I'll be wrong, and people from around the country will fly into JFK and spend the weekend on Rockaway Boulevard. We'll see.


steve in nc said...

Of course they might have to run blimp service from JFK to AQ to avoid the delays on the Van Wyck and Belt.

steve in nc said...

Are ya gonna get into the Gill thing? I'd give a leg to know what he uses on his horses. (Sorry, sleep deprivation is affecting me)

Anonymous said...

The Community has always supported AEG's plans for a first class destination casino at Aqueduct. There is good information on their website ( A first class destination casino will work at Aqueduct. AEG met regularly with the community and Queens organizations and gained their support and trust.

AEG is the chosen one of the bidders. Lets us now support this decision as they work their way through the MOU with the State. Racing and Queens needs this to be successful.

Anonymous said...

I have no problem supporting AEG even though it was not my first choice, assuming of course they have all their ducks in a row and are ready to put shovels in the ground. Bottom line is we need this thing up and running already.

But if they are NOT shovel ready and further delays are on the horizon, then move on to whomever is ready to roll, the community, the citizens of the state, and the horsemen have waited far too long to allow yet another delay.

El Angelo said...

I agree with Alan. Who wants to stay in a hotel in South Ozone Park at a slots-only casino annexed to a soulless racetrack?

Anonymous said...

to Mann the Gate,

good if you realign to NY racing's, bricks and mortar in your interesting blogs.

Forget about the complex, political Dr No Paterson and for God's sake, let any worn bidder, try to forward our cause, on behalf of ;

NY's racing/Stenched backstraight, NY community and most importantly a Paterson blackmailed budget fallstop - NY schooling, especially after all of the bidders painful political procrastinations.

PENN and SLG are maybe still worthy bidders, but there would have been, drawn-down backroom proposals, to compromise, other bidding issues, regarding upfront fees.

It is well published, Sheldon Silver is anti-racing in regard to the various gutsy, ripped off parties over past years, but Alan your reward ;

a scoop ; a couple of losing bidders are re-entering NY racing, under an 'inter-state', racing guise !!

But today, may the dice be community thrown, by NY's broad racing interests, or we won't even smell horse glue.


jk said...

The Post is throwing some dirt on this deal. When the low bidder by $100 mil is declared the winner, there are plenty of questions to be answered.

Floyd Flake's friends

Anonymous said...

Seems like to losers are throwing dirt at the winner. Nothing new here. Seems like a bit of the 'sore loser' scenario operating here.

Lets hope AEG gets it done with money starting to flow to the racing industry and jobs in Queens.

Anonymous said...

My wife is going to attend the meeting in Elmont tomorrow where The Senate will be quizzing NYRA. Does anyone know the time it will start?

Anonymous said...

Joint Hearing on NYRA's Finances and viability of thoroughbred racing in New York State

Wednesday, February 3, 2010 - 11:00 - 17:00

Elmont Memorial Library Theatre
700 Hempstead Turnpikey
Elmont, NY