FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 10th, 2010

COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA

Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board
P.O. Box 69060
Harrisburg, PA 17106-9060

CONTACT

Doug Harbach or Richard McGarvey (717) 346-8321

PA Gaming Control Board Announces Implementation Schedule For Table Games At Casinos

Plan allows all nine operating casinos to begin offering table games within 10 day period in July

HARRISBURG, PA:  The Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board today released a schedule for testing and implementation that will result in the first public availability of table game gambling in Commonwealth slots casinos as early as July 8th.

Kevin O'Toole presented the schedule at today’s meeting of the Board and by letter to each casino that holds an approved table games certificate.   He said the schedule includes an eight-hour test period of live betting at each casino to permit Board personnel to determine if the casino is prepared in all aspects to open its table game operation.  If approval is given after the test period, O’Toole says casinos can go live with table games two days later after allowing for one "down day" to evaluate the test including meetings of PGCB and casino personnel to discuss the results of the test period.

O’Toole says there will be three opening teams consisting of Board staff that can allow for the testing of table game operations simultaneously at three casinos in a region, and that the test schedule could permit the first group of casinos to fully offer its table games compliment on July 8th.

The test date schedule is as follows:

  • Tuesday, July 6 – Presque Isle Downs Casino (Erie), The Rivers Casino (Pittsburgh), The Meadows Racetrack and Casino (Washington)
  • Sunday, July 11 – Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs (Wilkes-Barre), Mt. Airy Resort Casino (Poconos), Hollywood Casino At Penn National Racecourse (Grantville)
  • Friday, July 16 – Harrah’s Chester Casino and Racetrack (Chester), Parx Casino (Bensalem), Sands Casino Resort (Bethlehem)

"The best news in this schedule is that our work will provide all nine casinos the opportunity to begin offering table games within a 10 day window," O’Toole says.

He adds that the roll out schedule was developed to assure that no casino would make table games available before another competitor casino in their particular region of the state, while meeting the collective  expectation of the casinos to offer table games in July.

"The testing and rollout plan was developed using a number of factors including how to be fair to each casino," O'Toole told the Board. "We were mindful of casinos that compete in similar markets and our implementation schedule took that into consideration along with making sure our staff was not stretched too thin in our efforts to properly regulate these openings."

In addition to the live test periods, O’Toole also informed the casinos that the opening teams will be conducting table game equipment inspections and a thorough review of surveillance coverage at least 3 to 5 days prior to the test dates.

O’Toole says the Board will also continue its work in the coming weeks in performing background investigations on the thousands of new employees to be hired at the casinos as the result of expansion into table games, approve new floor plans, continue the training of PGCB and Pennsylvania State Police personnel, and finish the writing and adoption of needed regulations.

 

About the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board was established in 2004 with the passage of Act 71, also known as the Race Horse Development and Gaming Act.  Pennsylvania’s first new state agency in nearly 40 years, the Gaming Control Board is tasked to oversee all aspects of the state’s casino industry.  To date, with nine of a maximum fourteen casinos in operation, legalized gaming in the Commonwealth has created over 8,000 new living wage jobs, revenue that has provided property tax reduction in each of the past two years for all homeowners, funds that have reinvigorated Pennsylvania’s horse racing industry, and new revenue to local governments that has funded scores of community projects.  A wealth of information about the Gaming Control Board and Pennsylvania’s gaming industry can be found at www.pgcb.state.pa.us.  At this web site, videos and information on the operation of the PGCB, problem gambling efforts and assistance, future meeting schedules and past meeting transcripts, an interactive map of casino locations, and a link to request a speaker are among the many items available.

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