Valley Forge Convention Center Gains Approval For Updated Casino Site Plan And Corporate Restructuring
Also Announces Plans to Begin Operations of Category 3 Resort Casino in Spring 2012
HARRISBURG, PA: The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board today approved requests by Valley Forge Convention Center Partners, LP that allows its Category 3 casino project to move forward.
The Board received testimony from representatives of the proposed Montgomery County resort casino at its Thursday public meeting and later granted approval to two petitions, one on a revised master site plan and a second that permits a corporate restructuring.
In its testimony, Valley Forge provided the Board and the public with updated renderings of its facility and announced that it intends to have the casino operational in the spring of 2012. The project was approved for licensing by the Board in April 2009, but a decision to uphold the licensing following an appeal to the State Supreme Court was not announced by the court until last month.
Valley Forge explained to the Board that the revised master site plan, which increases the gaming floor from 18,000 square feet to 32,980 square feet, was necessary because of legislative changes that occurred since its 2009 licensing. Those law changes now permit a Category 3 facility to operate 600 slot machines rather than the original maximum of 500, and permits table games. While the newly approved site plan provides space for table games, Valley Forge must first still gain approval of the Board to gain a table game certificate. That process would include both a public hearing in Upper Merion Township where the casino is located and another in Harrisburg.
The updated site plan also relocates the gaming floor from the lower level to the main level of the convention center facility, and incorporates a food court, retail space and a multi-purpose room. The facility will have 2,300 parking spaces available.
Additionally, the corporate restructuring plan was approved after Valley Forge explained to the Board that those same changes to the Gaming Act necessitated additional costs to prepare the current facility to house gaming. Those costs not only included the larger build out, but an additional $7.5 million for a table games certificate, when approved. The slot machine license fee remains at $5 million.
PowerPoint presentations offered by Valley Forge Convention Center Partners, LP at today’s public meeting are available on the Board’s web site by visiting the Board Meetings tab on the home page and choosing the April 28th meeting.
The Valley Forge Convention Center is one of two Category 3 slot machine licenses approved by the Board. The other was approved two weeks ago to Woodlands Fayette, LLC, which plans to operate a casino at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Fayette County. No timetable for the opening of that facility has been announced.
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. Currently, the ten casinos in operation in the Commonwealth employ over 14,000 people and legalized gaming has generated over $4.7 billion in tax revenue since the first casino opening in November 2006. That money is enabling property tax reduction for all Pennsylvania homeowners, providing needed funding to the Commonwealth’s horse racing industry, funding grants for fire companies and water/sewer projects, and establishing a new stream of tax revenue to local governments for 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, visitors can view videos of Board meetings and on the operation of the PGCB, obtain information on identifying a gambling problem and gaining assistance, look up future meeting schedules and past meeting transcripts, access an interactive map of casino locations, request a speaker for their group, along with much more information.
# # #