Gambling Legislation

New York casino licensing process closer to the finish line

A revamped bill once again changes the timeline for when new casinos could be licensed

Lawmakers in New York have already approved SB9673, but the downstate retail casino licensing process has yet to be accelerated. On June 24, Robert Williams, Executive Director of the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC), said the regulator would wait until the governor makes a final decision on the bill.

SB9673 still needs to be forwarded to Governor Kathy Hochul for her endorsement, which would enact the legislation.

During a March 25 meeting, Williams explained to the commission that many license applicants encountered land use matters that wouldn’t be settled until at least the first quarter of 2025. This prompted lawmakers to attempt to accelerate the licensing procedure, which has been delayed since October 2023.

SB9673 was submitted by Sen. Joseph P. Addabbo (D-Woodhaven) on May 17. The bill went before the Assembly on June 6 and was approved the following day.

The measure allows the NYSGC to consider applications for the three licenses while land use issues are resolved. Addabbo stressed that the possible revenue of $2.75 billion to $3 billion gained from licensing fees under the legislation became even more relevant on June 5. That’s when Gov. Hochul put a hold on the congestion pricing agenda, which planned to deliver $1 billion in funds for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

On June 24, NYSGC Chairman Brian O’Dwyer informed the commission that the board would provide an update on the application deadline for companies seeking to bid on the three available licenses.

While several providers have revealed their plans, none have yet submitted formal applications for a license.

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