A state-sanctioned commission has completed its study of ways to help Delaware’s struggling casino industry, recommending fee reductions and some tax breaks. Brian Bushweller (l.), the state senator who represents the district that includes Dover Downs, contends that the state should be a good business partner with the casinos.
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Illinois lawmakers will consider two expanded gambling proposals in bills sponsored by state Rep. Bob Rita (l.). One would create a state-operated, 10,000-position Chicago casino only. The second would create a 4,000-position Chicago casino and four others with 600 slots each. Neither bill would permit existing casinos to add gaming space.
Las Vegas legend Jackie Gaughan died last week at 93. The owner of the El Cortez, Gaughan built a Downtown empire before selling it off starting about 20 years ago. He was also the patriarch of a storied gaming family that includes South Point owner Michael Gaughan.
A leading pro-casino lawmaker in Japan’s Diet says a legalization bill may not pass by summer, as was expected. Support for the bill remains strong, but it appears to have stalled on technical issues. Casino supporter Takeshi Iwaya (l.) says an initial rollout may include remote regional casinos, as well as two casinos in Tokyo and Osaka.
Members of the House in New Hampshire reaffirmed their longstanding opposition to casino gaming last week. They voted 173-144 to kill a bill that would have authorized a single casino in the Granite State. Casino supporter Governor Maggie Hassan (l.) says she won’t give up.
Compact negotiations have begun between Florida Governor Rick Scott (l.) and the Seminole Tribe. At stake is a provision that will expire in mid-2015 giving the tribe exclusive rights to offer blackjack and other card games in exchange for a minimum of $1 billion from casino revenues over five years.
After four failed attempts in the four years, lawmakers in the western Pacific island of Saipan finally have agreed on a bill to legalize casinos. The big question now is whether Governor Eloy Inos (l.) will sign it.
When a major investor took a position in Boyd Gaming, the stock jumped. Why did that happen and what are the implications for other companies should this investor truly find the buried treasure?
This week, the GGB Podcast features a discussion with Lawrence Vaughan, the chief operating officer for South Point Poker, the newest entrant into the online poker field in Nevada, just days after it launched.
Macau’s Economy Secretary Francis Tam (l.) says the territory’s casino concessions will remain at six when they come up for renewal beginning in 2020. The terms of renewal, however, remain a source of considerable speculation.
Carson Yeung, the Hong Kong owner of England’s Birmingham City football club, has been sentenced to prison by a court in his native city for money laundering. The exact trail of the illicit funds is still obscure, but the signs point to Macau’s VIP rooms.
A short-lived sweepstakes-style casino on Hainan had pundits wondering if the popular south China resort island would become the country’s second legal gaming market. It won’t, say local officials, who emphasized recently that legalization is not a possibility.
Macau casino giant SJM has signed its second global fashion name to the Lisboa Palace resort the company is developing on Cotai. Karl Lagerfeld will be joining Versace as the second of the project’s two branded luxury hotels.
Paddy Power has weighed in to the FOBT controversy with a promise to sue to block the British government from imposing zoning limits on new betting shops. The limits, demanded by local governments, threaten the Irish bookmaker’s plans to become a force on UK high streets.
Grosvenor, the UK’s largest casino operator, wants to get larger. The company says it plans to challenge Aspers for the license to a new casino in the English city of Southampton.
Plans for the Aquis Great Barrier Reef project (l.) are moving closer to realization. Officials in the Australian state of Queensland, where it will be located, have signed off on the land deal for the $4 billion-plus resort complex.
The province of Ontario, Canada, is seeking applicants to build a casino in the gaming zoning that includes Ajax Downs (l.) and Woodbine Racetrack. It wants to pre-qualify applicants before they apply for specific projects.
The Surrey council says time is running out on a deal to place temporary slots at the Newton Bingo Hall in British Columbia and seeking to have the slots removed. Gateway Casinos and Entertainment is expected to do a $20-million overhaul of the Newton site, but construction has not started.
Two men have been charged in connection with the theft of a $100,000 gambling chip at the high-stakes, members-only Pearl Room at the Crown Perth casino in Australia. The chip was taken from a dealer's tray and recovered at the casino. Management is reviewing gaming floor procedures.
The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs has chosen the Thompson region of the province for construction of a new casino. The casino is expected to create about 140 jobs.
Though a casino resort has been studied for several years, Saugeen First Nation Chief Randall Kahgee (l.) said the project, to be located near Sauble Beach in Ontario, Canada, still is a "concept." The property would include a casino, cultural center, bingo parlor, hotel, cabins and cottages, retail, restaurants, marina and more.
Online gambling revenue grew 9 percent in New Jersey during February to $10.3 million. Borgata and its partner PartyPoker continue to have the largest market share. While that’s a slower overall growth rate than in January, the online revenue still helped offset shrinking revenues at Atlantic City’s land-based casinos which saw a 1.4 percent decline over February 2013.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission last week held a hearing about online gaming. Chairman Steven Crosby (l.) concluded that the state can’t wait much longer before implementing the system. Neighboring Rhode Island is also considering getting in the game.
A.G. Burnett (l.), chairman of the Nevada State Gaming Control Board, says the signs are good for the future of online gaming in the United States. He said a multistate agreement would be a plus, and held out hope for a federal law as well.
New Jersey gaming regulators have eased tight geolocation parameters for areas near its borders to help online gambling sites. Casino officials say that the improvements are already helping online gambling sites.
Betsson will purchase Class One Holding for €100 million. The purchase is subject to regulatory approval.
Williams Interactive has entered into agreements on two continents. In the UK, gaming giant Ladbrokes under which WMS slot games will be provided to Ladbrokes.com. And in New Jersey, Williams Interactive has entered into an agreement with Gamesys—operators of Tropicancasino.com and Virgincasino.com in New Jersey—to provide its library of Vegas-style slots to the Gamesys platform.
Nevada currently has three online poker rooms and could see that number double by the end of the year. But just how many rooms can the state really support? In a recent report, Online Poker Report breaks down what’s coming.
Microgaming is releasing two new casino slots games—Untamed-Crowned Eagle and Loose Cannon. Both games are available using Microgaming’s download, Flash and Quickfire platforms.
GEObet Network has launched a North American initiative to help bring Native American tribes into the internet gaming space.
Ultimate Gaming and the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino in Reno have signed a joint marketing partnership. Ultimate Poker will be the online poker room for Peppermill and its four Nevada properties. The partnership has to be approved by Nevada regulators.
Online gambling revenue rose in Spain for the latest quarter, but is still off 2012 figures. Meanwhile, Paddy Power has said it is not interested in the Spanish market and Ladbrokes is delaying migrating its Spanish players to its Sportium brand.
Women make up about one third of all players in the social games market, which hit $2 billion in 2013, according to a new poll. The number of women playing online social casino poker games was up 22 percent in 2013 compared to the year before, the survey said.
Teddy Sagi, founder of Playtech is planning a $100 million IPO in London. Sagi’s latest project is a digital wallet branded SafeCharge. Sagi controls 90 percent of the company’s stock.
A Monmouth County man hit an $84,300 jackpot on an online slots game at Borgatacasino.com. The jackpot is the largest won on an International Gaming Technology online game in New Jersey since online betting started in the state in November, casino officials said.
Malta has created a Responsible Gambling Foundation to address problem gambling.
International Game Technology and Double Down Casino have launched Transformers Battle for Cybertron for desktop and mobile devices.
It’s been a relatively slow news week for Bitcoins after the turmoil of the week before, but there have been some developments in the virtual currency’s story. Failed Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox is planning a telephone help line for depositors and Japan has ruled Bitcoins aren’t a currency.
Global Cash Access has promoted Randy L. Taylor from senior vice president and controller to the post of chief financial officer, among other executive appointments.
Las Vegas-based casino operator Caesars Entertainment is reporting a $1.9 billion asset impairment charge related to sinking revenues in Atlantic City (Bally’s AC at left); its abrupt exit from Massachusetts; and a crippling level of long-term debt. There are some bright spots, however: revenues are up and Vegas is going strong.
The main pro-casino advocacy groups in Kentucky are divided over which of the three gaming expansion bills before the legislature they will support. House Speaker Larry Clark (l.) wants to put casinos at state racetracks.
Penn National Gaming Inc. wasted no time after being awarded the first casino license by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, and scheduled its groundbreaking for a week later in Plainville at Plainridge Racetrack (l.). Outside Boston, Steve Wynn renewed his appeal for the same tax rate as the Wampanoag tribe will receive.
Sullivan and Ulster counties are in favor of casinos. So are Albany and Rensselaer counties. Saratoga County said yes at the polls, but the city of Saratoga Springs says no. Washington and Schenectady counties both voted no. The New York Gaming Commission is sure to hear from all of them.
Colorado voters may have a chance to approve initiatives that would allow slots, table games and video lottery machines at Arapahoe Park Racetrack (l.) in Aurora, and at two yet-to-be-determined racetracks in Pueblo and Mesa counties. The Colorado Gaming Association, which represents the casinos in Cripple Creek, Black Hawk and Central City, opposes the measures.
It’s been a year since the last casino resort the Horseshoe Casino (l.), opened in Ohio in Cincinnati, and they have brought about great changes in the communities they reside in, but also raised questions about how voters were promised much larger profits.
It’s three down, 12 to go as Las Vegas’s Culinary and Bartenders unions continue to negotiate new contracts with the city’s stand-alone resorts. All the casinos owned by MGM and Caesars have settled new deals. The outstanding casinos have until March 20 to come to terms or face a possible strike.
With a $20 million upgrade, the 50-year-old hotel-casino in the Reno-Sparks region has come back to life. M1 Gaming bought the historic property last year from Pinnacle Entertainment. With the renovations, it will celebrate its 50th anniversary in style.
The New York Racing Association is questioning whether Aqueduct in Queens, New York, can or should continue as a horseracing venue. In addition to declines across the industry, the track has gotten a lot of flack for sub-par facilities, financial straits, horse deaths, and that takeout scandal.
MGM Resorts International has agreed to pay $500,000 plus costs to settle a five-county complaint regarding drug sales and prostitution at the House of Blues’ Foundation Room (l.) at Mandalay Bay in Vegas. Undercover investigators bought cocaine and Ecstasy there, and also solicited sex for hire.
Funding for veterans' homes and education have taken a hit in Missouri as visitors and tax revenue have declined. Officials blame the especially harsh winter, the economic downturn and competition from neighboring states. State Budget Director Linda Luebbering (l.) blames competition from neighboring states.
The South Dakota Senate approved a constitutional amendment allowing Deadwood casinos to offer roulette, keno and craps. Voters will decide the issue in November. Senators killed a bill allowing casinos with hotel bars to sell liquor 24/7. The House voted against raising video lottery machines from 10 to 15 in licensed establishments.
Visitors at the former Indiana Grand Casino and Indiana Downs will notice new signage and much more at the now-named Indiana Grand Racing & Casino in Shelbyville. Owners Centaur Gaming will invest multi-millions to upgrade the Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse facility, which will offer a mix of afternoon and evening racing starting May 9.
Under a budget proposal presented by Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian (l.), taxpayers in the resort could see a 47 percent tax increase in the wake of several drastic reductions to casino tax assessments after successful tax appeals by casinos. The city will seek $20 million in state aid to help offset the increase.
The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association has advised its members to oppose three bills recently introduced in the House of Representatives. The measures would reduce the number of race days and redirect or end proceeds.
Nebraska Senators voted to let voters decide on a constitutional amendment that would allow bets on historic horseraces. In 2012 Governor Dave Heineman vetoed similar legislation, also sponsored by state Senator Scott Lautenbaugh, but a constitutional amendment doesn't require the governor's signature.
In Iowa, the city of Davenport has applied for state funds for a $71.5 million hotel, waterpark and performance venue project by competing casino developers Dan Kehl and Rodney Blackwell. And the city of Dubuque raised bus fares to help offset decreasing casino revenue.
West Virginia’s Wheeling Island Casino has improved its players club to give table-game players more points. Revenue has declined significantly and is designed to make the casino more competitive.
Three more people have filed lawsuits claiming they were assaulted by Harrah’s Atlantic City security personnel. The suits come after Philly.com reported a suit by a Florida family against Caesars Entertainment, the casino’s parent company, for an alleged assault at Harrah’s.
A federal judge last week took up the issue of whether a casino proposed by the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) for Martha’s Vineyard comes under state or federal jurisdiction. The tribe is defending itself from a lawsuit by the state, which maintains that it doesn’t have the right to build a small bingo parlor on the island in the tribe’s former community center (l.).
The House of Representatives in Maine moved three bills last week that will expand Indian gaming in the state, leading to two new casinos and allowing two tribes to upgrade their high stakes bingo offerings. At left is the bingo hall of the Penobscot Nation.
The Forest County Potawatomi Community, which operates a casino in Milwaukee (l.), said it expects Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker to keep a promise to allow a new casino only if all 11 Wisconsin tribes approve it—and the Potawatomi do not approve the Menominee tribe's proposed $800 million casino in Kensoha. Walker recently asked the federal government for a six-month extension beyond the August 23 deadline for making a decision.
A federal judge said she may not rule on the "never-ending saga" of the civil contempt case against the Tiguas tribe until later this year. The Texas Attorney General's office said the tribe violated a 2001 injunction against offering gambling at its Speaking Rock Entertainment Center in El Paso.
A 21-acre tract in Kay County, Oklahoma, owned by the Kaw Nation, recently was approved for gaming use by U.S. Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Kevin Washburn (l.). The tribe, which operates the Kaw Nation SouthWind Casino near Newkirk, Oklahoma, will operate a small casino in conjunction with a travel plaza it already owns.
Thanks to a U.S. District Court ruling, the Cayuga Indian Nation of New York may soon offer gaming in the Empire State. A judge modified a deal struck by Governor Andrew Cuomo, and removed one county from a 10-county zone of exclusivity for the Oneida Nation. That seems to open it up to the Cayugas.
Members of the Los Coyotes Band of Indians and city officials of Barstow, traveled to Washington D.C. last week to meet with federal officials about their application for an off-reservation casino 100 miles from their San Diego base.
Harrah’s Rincon Casino & Resort has changed its name to Harrah’s Resort Southern California and will soon unveil $160 million in improvements to go along with the new moniker.
The town board of Henrietta, New York is preparing a resolution to officially oppose a casino in the community. The Seneca Nation, which operates three gaming halls in Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Salamanca, recently purchased a 37-acre plot in the town, with a plan to develop a casino there.
The Board of Supervisors of Siskiyou County recently invited the public to sound off on a proposal for a casino in this most northern county in California by the Karuk Tribe. The tribe proposes to build in Yreka.
Federal Judge Anthony Ishii last week decided that he doesn’t have the jurisdiction to rule on a restraining order being sought by one faction of the Chukchansi tribe against another faction. Three factions are battling for control of the tribe and the Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino.
A northern California tribe, the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians is challenging the legality of a referendum that would subject its compact with the state to a vote in November. It filed a lawsuit in state court last week to stop it.
New York state senators have officially approved Mark Gearan to head up the state’s gaming commission. Gearan is the president of Hobart and William Smith colleges. He has pledged integrity and transparency in selecting the state’s first four Class III casino licensees.
Chis Cahill is resigning his position as executive vice president of global operations for Las Vegas Sands Corporation effective March 31.
Fred Buro has resigned from his position as chief marketing officer of MTR Gaming Group to pursue a start-up opportunity in the online gaming industry.
Bally Wulff has named Thomas Wendt to the newly created position of development executive, in charge of the team creating new game packages.
The Gaming Standards Association announced the results of its board of directors election, including the re-election of IGT’s Adrian Marcu as chairman.
David Skorton, president of Cornell University and chairman of the New York Racing Association, will be leaving both establishments at some point for a new post as secretary at the Smithsonian Institution. No exit date has been announced by Skorton.
Isle of Capri Casinos and Carnival Cruise Lines have announced a partnership under which Isle players will earn complimentary cruises and special rates on Carnival ships.
Imagine renting a hotel room for a full 24 hours, and not being shortchanged by several hours due to a fixed check-out time. That’s the plan for the Palms in Las Vegas, which has created a variable check-out plan at no extra cost to guests.
GLI founders James Maida (l.) and Paul Magno have acquired all the assets of Kobetron LLC, an Ohio-based gaming testing company.
FutureLogic, Inc. has signed a sales and service agreement with Universal Gaming Resources, which will sell and service FutureLogic products in Colorado and South Dakota.
Inspired Gaming has signed an exclusive agreement with Spanish slot manufacturer R. Franco to supply Franco its Open SBG technology platform.
PAGCOR, assisted by Gaming Laboratories International, has announced uniform technical standards for electronic gaming machines. The two groups finalized the deal in Manila recently
The American Gaming Association (AGA) and Reed Exhibitions have reached an agreement with the Nevada Hotel and Lodging Association to present a Hotel Show at G2E that will include tailored trade show exhibits, educational content, expert presenters and cutting-edge trends
Tom Breitling, chairman of Ultimate Gaming and Tobin Prior, the company CEO, will provide the keynote address at iGaming North America.
The G2E Asia trade show has been approved by UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, after an audit of all exhibition related data.
Britain’s Advertising Standards Authority has ordered Irish bookmaking giant Paddy Power to pull an advertisement offering odds on the outcome of the Oscar Pistorius murder trial. Paddy Power has defended the campaign and says it will not comply.
A Las Vegas newspaper was able to purchase two of the “2341 keys” at the center of the $1 million fine against Reno’s Peppermill simply by going on eBay.
Small Nuggets of News
Outrageous pronouncements, simple statements and words of wisdom