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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

One To Go

The Senate Democratic leadership has quickly signed off on Genting, and that's no surprise to me, as you know if you've been following the action here.

“Nothing is more important than creating jobs. The acceptance of Genting puts New York on the fast track to rebuild our local and state economy through sound economic development and immediate and long-term job creation,” said Senate Majority Conference Leader John L. Sampson.
Of course, Sampson wasn't so concerned about jobs when he was holding out for AEG, which I think will be quite clear once the Inspector General's probe into the fiasco is completed. I am SO looking forward to that, and I expect that the Governor's testimony will be particularly candid and revealing.

So, the ball is in the court of the Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver....and what else is new? Silver drove the agenda with AEG, insisting that it raise its bid and subject itself to scrutiny and licensing requirements that ultimately led to its demise. Good thing too, or so it seems, given the fact that Genting is in another galaxy from AEG in terms of experience and finances. In fact, Governor Paterson's decision to once again rebid the project - subject to near-universal derision at the time - has netted the state an extra $80 million and a fresh proposal that had Lottery Director Gordon Medenica, appearing during Monday's presentation to the Senate, remark "Wow, finally a top notch, first class" operator. I'd think that maybe Penn National and Delaware North might take some offense from that remark.

Anyway, it seems unlikely that Silver would hold up the works at this point given the fact that the conditions he set for AEG have been met and surpassed. You never know with the Speaker, and he's certainly in a position to extract some kind of price. He might not sign off this week if just to spite the three Senators who called on him to do so during Monday's presentation. But it seems that the selection saga is finally coming to an end.

Genting spokesperson Jay Walker provided a little more detail on what the company has in mind. For one thing, that fountain in the front? Three stories high, woo hoo! All of the slots will be located on two floors, with the third reserved for "future use." Hmmm, can you guess what they have in mind? No, it's not an expansion of the racing section. Walker spoke about how table games would "enhance the location greatly;" particularly for the 47 million people a year who make their way through JFK, most on their way to somewhere else. What better way to spend a layover than at the blackjack tables a few miles away?


Figless said...

The tie in with the Airport makes so much sense, just need a quality shuttle and a secure place to check your carry-ons.

However, I remain skeptical this gets done, no real reason other than pure phobia at this point, something will happen to screw up the process (litigation the obvious candidate), kind of like the Jets actually making a Super Bowl run.

Steve Zorn said...

I'm almost, but not quite, rethinking my decision just to vote no for the State Senate this year. Hard to imagine that, a mere 10 years late, we might finally get this done.

Anonymous said...

The fountain is going to be shooting water three stories high? In January? With the wind blowing? I think most of the new jobs will be going to ice chippers!

steve in nc said...

Now if a "Nevada-style libertarian zone" could be created (the quetion about the use of the 3rd floor brought red lights to mind), and there could be an adjoining hotel, then I think some real revenue could be generated for purses.

John Manley said...

Any truth to the rumor that JetBlue attendants will be opening the emergency hatch on the tarmac for anyone who wants to disembark for the racino without having to be inconvenienced by hoofing it through the terminal?

Alan Mann said...

John - Good one. Maybe they should hire this guy to run their hospitality staff.

jk said...

Silver signed off.

Here come the 50k purses for NYB 15k MCL.

Anonymous said...

Wait till Genting starts sending the best NY "players" up to Foxwoods in Ct eher they have a vested interest to experience a real casino. Genting, the original financier for the Mashuntucket Indians at Foxwoods, still gets 10%of the net take up there for the next 8 years or so. If you look closely at the Genting NY management team, you see Foxwoods from CT. The state, Lottery, and NYRA all are embracing this group of real out of state competitors, when in prior rounds CT Indian tribes were taboo? Also, Genting has recently backed the Mashpee Indian tribe in Mass, a group that is expecting to get one of the full service casinos in that state.

What is NY really thinking here? Who's behind this new Aqueduct candidate Genting? Mysterious at best, when a Malaysian group comes to NY to "take over" and nobody objects?

Speaker Sheldon Silver, Majority Leader John Sampson and Governor David Paterson, do explain the Lottery's new best non-American friend?

Figless said...

Anon 817, I do believe Genting stepped into the perfect situation. The bids were public, easy to top, and election year when the governor just wanted this got go away, and the politicians desperate for fundsand as close to being embarrassed as politicians ever can be.

It certainly would be interesting to investigate recent political contributions from Genting and Associates though.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if AEG is going to appeal? What about Penn National and SL Green. I cannot believe they have all walked away after spending so much money and time.

Anonymous said...

Very Concerned Horsemen.

Well the Muslims always wanted NY one way or another, so did the Indians, so why not combine & that's exactly what's happened.

Malaysia's Genting, just wants in to America.

Genting's willingness to sign anything on 'carte-blanche', reeks of a long term, hidden agenda.

As Tim Rooney Jr., general counsel for Empire City at Yonkers Raceway said yesterday,

“Either they’re not concerned about making a profit and they’re willing for Aqueduct to serve as a loss leader,” he said, “or they don’t understand the market.”

Figless said...

Friday's Spa card includes FIVE maiden races on a nine race card, four of them claimers, the other an inscrutable 2yo field going two turns on the grass.

Two nice Stakes with small fields, a conditioned claimer on the grass, and an open claiming sprint.

Why should I care? Why should I not go check out Monmouth?

Figless said...

VCH, there are Indians on this deal? Thought it was just Genting.

Perhaps Genting knows a little more about the market than the Rooneys tucked away in their bunker up in Yonkers? They have just a tad more experience in this field than Mr. Rooney, who would be nowhere near as successful in his operation if the projected competition from the Big A had materialized sooner.

Genting seems to have a plan that capitalizes on their locations, hoping to draw from the airport, LI, and the city, and a long term plan to capitalize when table games are inevitably approved. They will be huge near the airport.

As for the Muslimphobia, not sure why anyone would be concerned with a hidden agenda?

This company has a long track record in this field and has been targeted by extremists many times. Do your homework, this is not some terrorist front.

If they showed up out of nowhere with all this money like those trying to build the mosque- Islamist Center at Ground Zero, that would be a completely different story.

They are as legit as any player in the field, possibly moreso considering the "connections" to some of these racinos.

Anonymous said...

figless go to Monmouth and don't bother coming back. Everyone else will be much better for it.

Figless said...

Everyone except NYRA who will miss my handle.

Anonymous said...

Genting has direct ties Stanley Ho, who among other things has ties to a bank in North Korea (yes Little Kim's corrupt country) which allegedly has ties to funding terrorism, not to mention Ho's ties to Chinese Triad's. I cannot possibly see how NY approved this company. It is nonsense that The Lottery stated they undertook extensive background checks in about two months.

The gaming authorities in New Jersey, with far more experience than NY Lottery in these matters, took over a year to find MGM's connection to Ho's daughter unacceptable.