NY Gaming Board Releases Request For New York Casino Applications

Written By Katarina Vojvodic on January 4, 2023
The process for applicants looking to operate a casino in New York is now open

The Gaming Facility Location Board opened the process for applicants looking to operate a casino in New York. The board is part of the New York State Gaming Commission and has been appointed to evaluate casino applications.

On Jan. 3, the board released the request for applications, including a rating system, which will determine the winners of the casino license bids.

The Commission determined that the license fee would be at least $500 million. However, the companies may offer more as part of the competitive bidding.

In October, the Commission said it had expected to issue its Request For Applications (RFA) by Jan. 6, 2023. Back then, the Commission identified the three members of the new panel – Quenia Abreu, Vicki L. Been, and Stuart Rabinowitz.

Operators must also pay the state $500M for casino license

The operators awarded licenses to run any of the three New York casinos in the city area will have to pay at least a $500 million fee to the state. Apart from the license fee, the minimum capital investment required of any interested parties will also be $500 million.

The license fee must be paid within 30 days of the license award.

But the license fee can turn into a pricier bidding war, separating well-resourced candidates from pretenders. “An applicant may propose to pay a higher license fee,” the board said.

The board will review each application while considering several factors:

  • Number of jobs a prospective operator intends to create
  • How much revenue a casino plans to bring in
  • Commitment to partner with minority and women-owned business enterprises

The initial casino licenses will run from 10 years to 30 years.

The initiative to bring more full-scale casinos goes back a decade. In November 2013, New Yorkers voters approved a constitutional amendment to expand casino gambling, authorizing seven commercial casinos across the state.

Since then, four of those licenses have been approved.

The race is on to build a casino in New York City

Following the state’s release of the application, A Coney Island consortium group released a statement saying it would submit a bid for one of the casino licenses. The group includes:

  • Thor Equities
  • Saratoga Casino Holdings
  • The Chickasaw Nation
  • Legends, co-owned by the Yankees

Meanwhile, SL Green Realty Corp. revealed its tactics to seek a full-fledged casino license in partnership with Caesars Entertainment. SL Green and Caesars intend to put a casino on Times Square, inside the Broadway office tower.

Resorts World New York City in Queens and Empire City Casino in Yonkers have also expressed intentions of building a casino.

Furthermore, Wynn Resorts is considering a bid for an opportunity to build a casino at Hudson Yards in Manhattan. Steve Cohen, New York Mets owner, is eyeing a casino next to the team’s home stadium of Citi Field in Willets Point, Queens.

Photo by PlayUSA
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Katarina Vojvodic

Katarina Vojvodic is a lead writer for PlayUSA who lives in Toronto. Vojvodic provides coverage of the US gambling industry with a focus on US online casinos. Previously, she covered Ontario’s online gambling industry for PlayCanada.com. Vojvodic holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Belgrade. Outside working hours, she can be found near the water with her husband and their two kids.

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