The Second Philly Casino License Goes to Live!

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

The PA Gaming Control Board has just publicly voted to award the second Philadelphia casino license to Stadium Casino LLC, operating as Live! This is just the initial phase of the licensing. The decision is subject to appeal, and therefore the Board will not comment on the decision. The meeting has just ended, but before it did, PA Gaming Control Board Chairman Bill Ryan said that the denials of the other three petitioners had nothing to do with lack of character or integrity in the other contenders. Rather, the decision was based on the following factors: the protection of the public; public interest and the social effects of gambling; the integrity and control of the slots business; tax revenues and tourism in Pennsylvania.

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Ugly Allegations Enter Philly Casino License Picture

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A still from the Fox29 report.

Someone affiliated with one of the four casino bidders (not Live!) sent me the below video this morning, shortly after I saw the same story on philadelinquency.com. The allegation is this: The expected announcement that Live! will win the bid for Philly’s second casino license today may be, in part, due to a romantic relationship between a lead attorney for the Live! project and a lawyer who worked, until earlier this year, for the PA Gaming Board. PDQ’s Chris Sawyer calls it a “sexual conspiracy theory”; Fox29 takes it more seriously, and speaks with the interim head of the Committee of Seventy about it:

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Will South Philly Beat Out Center City for a Casino?

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

Tomorrow the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board holds a special meeting at the Pennsylvania Convention Center at which it publicly votes on who gets Philadelphia’s second casino license. There are four bidders — two in Center City (The Provence at 400 North Broad Street and Market8 at 8th and Market) and two in South Philly (Casino Revolution at 3333 South Front Street and Live! Hotel and Casino at 900 Packer Ave.) — waiting for word.

Because the whole thing has taken so damn long, we asked Doug Harbach, PGCB spokesperson, what would happen if the vote is deadlocked tomorrow. You know, just in case. Ain’t gonna happen.

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Suburban Officials Blast Possibility of New Philadelphia Casino

Officials from Delaware County gathered today to blast the idea of a second casino in Philadelphia. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board will vote on Tuesday to decide which bidder, if any, will get a license for a second casino in Philadelphia.

“Common sense just shows you that the gaming industry has changed,” Delaware County Councilman John McBlain said today in Ridley. “The combination of a bad, national economic climate, online gaming taking effect in many places and the saturation of the casino market has changed the game.”

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Morning Headlines: Casino Developer Faces NIMBY Opposition in South Philly

 

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

Rendering of Live! Hotel and Casino via PlanPhilly

Earlier this week, Joel Mathis announced that the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board will soon bestow Philadelphia’s second casino license to one of the four applicants left. But with rumors that one of the contenders has the license in the bag, and the approval not due till the 18th, residents in South Philadelphia are rallying in protest.

According to NewsWorks’ Bill Hangley, residents are fighting against Stadium Casinos, LLC’s proposed Live! Hotel and Casino that would be at 10th and Packer. Their main issue with the proposed development? It’s proximity to the stadium complex. From NewsWorks:  Read more »

State Poised to Strike Casino Firearms Ban

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The State of Pennsylvania appears ready to strike down its longstanding casino firearms ban.

Casinos would still be able to bar guns from their premises, under the new rule to be considered next week by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission. But the current blanket ban — in effect since 2008 — appears to be illegal under a 2011 state law restricting the ability of state agencies to regulate firearms.

Don’t expect Pennsylvania casinos to become a shooting gallery, however.

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Stockton College to Buy Former Showboat Casino

showboat

Caesars, which owns the now-shuttered Showboat Casino that closed August 31st, has signed an agreement to sell the property to Stockton College.

“If the transaction of Showboat Atlantic City is completed, Stockton will acquire approximately 28 acres and a 1,425,000 square-foot building,” the statement said. “Stockton said it plans to repurpose the former Showboat site as a branch campus. The transaction is subject to completion of due diligence by the College and the negotiation and execution of a definitive agreement.”

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Thousands of People Lost Their Jobs in Atlantic City and Donald Trump Is Gloating

On August 31st, Showboat Atlantic City closed its doors for the final time. On September 2nd, Revel did the same. More than 5,000 people lost their jobs — dealers, security guards, waitresses, maids, bartenders. When Trump Plaza closes later this month, the total will rise to about 6,000 unemployed casino workers.

Donald Trump, of course, thinks people should also mention Donald Trump — and his wise move of “getting out” of Atlantic City “before its demise.” Perhaps we should examine Trump’s history in Atlantic City.

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Revel Went Out With an Early-Morning Fire Alarm

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Revel on its last day. Photo | Dan McQuade

The Revel couldn’t even close without a little drama.

With just five hours until closing, the fire alarm at Revel went off. At 1 a.m., the casino emptied of patrons and workers. Most of the patrons strolled away from the casino for the last time, while the workers gathered outside posed for group photos on their final night. Revel closed at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, just over two years after its opening was supposed to usher in a revitalization of Atlantic City’s northern end of the boardwalk.

Bayani, a Revel dealer, exited the casino and stared out at the ocean, the fire alarm still shrieking inside the soon-to-be-shuttered casino. “What else can they do to me?” he said to no one in particular. He laughed.

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