Gaming Control Board Denies Requests From Philadelphia Casinos For Extension To PAy $50 Million License Fees HARRISBURG
- The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board today denied motions from HSP Gaming, LP (Sugarhouse Casino) and Philadelphia Entertainment and Development Partners, LP (Foxwoods Casino) for an extension of time to pay their $50 million license fee.
The unanimous ruling means that Sugarhouse and Foxwoods are required to pay the $50 million fee within 10 business days of the meeting date.
Chairman Mary DiGiacomo Colins said the Board was unconvinced that good cause to further delay the payments was established by either licensee.
"The Board believes that the delays to gain all necessary approvals required to begin construction should not have been unexpected by SugarHouse and Foxwoods," Colins said while adding that further delays in the payments would be inequitable to both other licensees who have paid the fee and to taxpayers who are promised these revenues under the Gaming Act.
The 6-0 vote came after the Board held a public hearing on September 6, 2007 to receive information from the licensees on why they should not pay the $50 million license fee until such time that construction could begin on their respective casinos. Board member Jim Ginty abstained from today's vote because he was not yet a member when the hearings were held.
In other business, the Board approved an Independent Audit Committee Criteria Policy, which establishes the standards used to evaluate an independent audit committee when required as a condition of a slot facility’s licensure, along with the internal controls and floor plans for the Category 2 Slot Machine licensee Mount Airy Lodge and Casino. PGCB staff is currently working with Mount Airy to prepare for test nights and public opening.
The Board also received reports from Mark McDermott of the Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association and from Dr. Paul Spears, Chairman of Hanover Shoe Farms. In their presentations, they explained that there has been a dramatic increase of interest and investment in horse breeding across Pennsylvania because of the new funding from gaming revenue.
The next meeting of the Gaming Control Board will be in Harrisburg on Wednesday, October 17, 2007 in PUC Hearing Room 1 in the Keystone Building. The meeting will begin at the conclusion of the Board's 9:00 a.m. hearing on Category 3 eligibility.