Pretlow Urges New York to Accelerate Casino Revenue Realization

Gary Pretlow

New York Assemblyman Gary Pretlow (D-Mount Vernon) is calling for swift action to capitalize on the economic benefits of casino gaming in the New York City area.

The process has been anything but, with current projections suggesting that decisions on the highly coveted licenses may not be made until late 2025 or early 2026.

In an effort to avoid further costly delays, Pretlow and Sen. Joseph Addabbo (D-Queens) introduced legislation last week that would, if enacted, require the issuance of these permits by March 31, 2025. Pretlow emphasizes that this move could particularly benefit minority communities.

While lobbyists and gaming industry observers were hopeful for progress on the New York casino licenses this year, other experts predicted delays until 2025, citing bureaucratic hurdles among other factors.

Accelerating the Casino Approval Process

Pretlow highlighted New York’s $9.5 billion budget shortfall in his op-ed, noting that the $500 million license fee per winning bidder—totaling $1.5 billion—could significantly help bridge this gap.

“But first we need to actually start flipping cards. He criticized the Gaming Commission’s decision to delay license awards until the end of 2025, pointing out that this postponement means the promised tens of thousands of construction and permanent jobs will not materialize for at least another two years.

Beyond licensing fees, Pretlow pointed out that New York City-area casinos have the potential to generate billions in income and sales taxes, among other revenues, for the state.

Urgency in Legislation

The bills proposed by Addabbo and Pretlow aim to expedite the New York casino process. With only seven working days remaining in the state’s 2024 legislative session, time is of the essence.

This would pave the way for clarity on the New York casino situation by the first quarter of 2025.

Should this timeline be met, gaming companies and real estate partners would have up to two years to address environmental and property issues, setting the stage for the eventual development of the casinos.

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