Gov. Cuomo tipped his hand a little in SOS yesterday. He wants for now (1) no new casinos in NYC (2) three “upstate,” another four in future (3) locations and scale to be decided by a Gam[bl]ing Commission he will appoint. I thought the first-passage bill in 2012 said “as prescribed by the legislature,” which seems cut out of the deal. If the amendment proposal goes to referendum, how much devil will be in the details?
Stephen Q. Shafer, M.D., M.A., M.P.H.
Summary: Up to seven new commercial casinos would be allowed by a proposed amendment to the State Constitution, risking the creation of eighty thousand new gambling addicts and two hundred thousand new problem gamblers in New York State. The quantifiable costs related just to these new out-of-control gamblers would far outweigh the tax revenues New York State would see from “recapturing” gamblers who had been crossing state lines and also taxing new in-state casinos on their take from new gamblers. The number of pathological (addicted) gamblers and problem gamblers created would exceed the number of new hires at the casinos by a factor of ten or more.