Monday, December 27, 2010

GOP: Phila. Doesn't Need Another Casino

Top Republicans say they want to amend Pennsylvania's gaming laws, and take the revoked Foxwoods casino license away from Philadelphia.

The incoming head of the House Gaming Oversight Committee says he'll introduce a bill next year reopening the Philadelphia-specific casino license to a statewide bid.

Senate Republican leaders indicate they'd seriously consider the measure, if it passes the lower chamber.

When asked about the movement, Governor Rendell said it's not his call, since he's leaving office - but he said he could buy the argument Philadelphia's gaming market might be oversaturated.

"Bucks County - Parx - Harrah's in Chester, SugarHouse in Philadelphia. And it's likely that the Valley Forge license will be granted. So they might decide Philadelphia's got too much. On the other hand, they might look at the state, take a look and say, where is there part of the state that needs another?"

Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi's spokesman, Erik Arneson, says Republicans would also be open to disbanding the license altogether.

"We have a lot of experience now with casinos in Pennsylvania. And there could be the argument made the casino market in our state is saturated. And Senator Pileggi would be very willing to listen to those kinds of arguments as well."

A measure reopening the Foxwoods license for bid passed a Senate committee this session, but never saw a floor vote.

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