Tag Archives: Resorts World Casino New York City

Resorts World celebrates two-year anniversary, gives back


| mhayes@queenscourier.com

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Resorts World Casino celebrates two milestones: it’s two-year anniversary, and over $900 million generated for New York State’s revenue.

“While we never doubted this would be a successful venture, not only for Resorts World Casino New York City, but for the Queens community and New York State, we are incredibly proud of how far we’ve come,” said Edward Farrell, president of Resorts World Casino New York City.

Of the generated $930 million, nearly $600 million have gone directly to the state’s education fund.

Additionally, in 2010, the casino paid a $381 million licensing fee, totaling the casino’s contributions to the state to be roughly $1 billion.

“We believe strongly that our success is in large part due to the hospitality shown to us by the residents of Queens. This borough is our home, and as part of this community we are committed to doing everything we can to support it,” Farrell said.

 

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Queens Restaurant Week draws diners


| editorial@queenscourier.com

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As Queens Restaurant Week has officially begun, eatery owners are hoping more diners will gobble up deals being served throughout the borough.

The 10th annual promotion started Monday, September 30, and includes three-course dinners for $28 and three-course lunches for $14 at most participating Queens restaurants.

Ellen LaPerna, manager of Bourbon Street, said she has already seen a moderate amount of people take advantage of deals at the Bayside establishment.

“So far, so good,” she said.

This is Bourbon Street’s sixth year in the program, LaPerna said.

“People do come out and participate,” she said. “I think the community likes it. It’s just another reason for people to come out and try our food.”

Queens Restaurant Week ran until October 3 and will pick up again October 7 through 10.

Manager Colleen Bowerman of Austin’s Ale House & Trackside Café said her Kew Gardens eatery has participated in the promotion every year.

The restaurant typically sees a jump in diners during the extended second week, Bowerman said.

“We’re hoping it’ll pick up,” she said. “We’ll see how it goes.”

Dan Dolacinski, manager of CityRib in Jamaica, also has his fingers crossed.

This marks the barbecue joint’s first year participating after opening up this July.

“Every year, people like Restaurant Week,” he said. “We expect people to know we’re here in the community.”

Restaurant Week is presented by the Queens Tourism Council and is sponsored by Melrose Credit Union, jetBlue, Resorts World Casino New York City, Restaurant Depot, Tequila Sunrise of Bayside, The Queens Courier and The Best of the Boro.

The long list of participating restaurants, which features all sorts of Mexican, Cajun, Mediterranean and Asian cuisines, can be found at www.itsinqueens.com/restaurantweek/Queens/.

 

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State gaming agreement leaves Queens out of casino deal


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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Governor Andrew Cuomo and state legislators have come to an agreement on a gaming deal that would effectively put four casinos upstate and leave Queens without one for now.

There is a seven-year hold on increasing the number of New York casinos, according to Cuomo’s office. After that, the entire state is up for grabs pending new legislation.

This leaves Resorts World Casino New York City out of the running to become a Las Vegas-style casino with full table games, as some Queens officials had hoped.

State Senator Joseph Addabbo, whose district includes the Racino and Aqueduct, said on Wednesday, June 19 that he was still reviewing the bill before it enters the Senate and Assembly for votes. His top concern, he said, was how it would affect his district.

“I’m still going through it because I need to look at the whole bill in its entirety,” he said. “My first priority is my district.”

He added that constituents might not necessarily venture upstate for gaming, but could cross the border to Connecticut or New Jersey instead.

“If they’re going to just have some entertainment, they’re basically going to stay local,” he said.
Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder also opposed Cuomo’s original plan, which barred downstate casinos. He said he is still reviewing the bill and is hopeful Resorts World could become a full casino.

“I’m still going through the bill to determine the rest of the merit, if it’s something I can vote for,” he said. “New York City is in the running in the seven years. They’re on an equal footing as everyone else in seven years.”

Along with colleagues and business leaders, Addabbo and Goldfeder argued that if the referendum passes, Resorts World could be a fully operational casino as soon as January. They said an expanded wagering facility would have led to 1,000 jobs along with stimulating the economy in the area.

Cuomo has pushed for upstate casinos, which are expected to boost tourism, since his State of the State address earlier this year. Throughout negotiations, his goal was to make sure full casinos come to upstate New York first.

“Today’s agreement with the Legislature would establish world-class destination gaming resorts to attract tourists to Upstate New York, generating economic activity for local businesses and creating thousands of good paying jobs where we need it most,” Cuomo said in a statement.

Video Lottery Terminals (VLTs) similar to those at Resorts World will also expand in the state. Nassau and Suffolk Counties are possible sites. According to the governor’s office, the number of VLTs could increase if the November referendum cannot pass in order to make up for revenue expected from full casinos.

 

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Friday: Partly cloudy with a chance of rain. High of 70. Breezy. Winds from the North at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 50%. Friday night: Partly cloudy with a chance of rain in the evening, then clear. Low of 61. Winds from the WNW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Disco Inferno III

Back once again, the music/dance extravaganza Disco Inferno at Resorts World Casino NYC on Friday, June 14 will feature Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes, Rochelle Fleming of First Choice, Double Exposure, Carol Williams, Disco Unlimited, DJ Jenny Costa, Percussionist Peter Gozzi and host Al Magliano. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Mayor blasts DOJ’s recommendation for NYPD monitor ahead of stop-and-frisk decision

The U.S. Justice Department has tread carefully into the debate over the NYPD’s stop, question and frisk policy, telling a federal judge that it strongly endorses an independent monitor to oversee changes should she decide civil rights violations have occurred.  Read more: CBS New York/AP

NYCHA budget cuts could lead to 500 jobs lost, section 8 rent hikes

The federal sequester’s impact could soon be causing big headaches for New Yorkers who live in public housing. Read more: NY1

City Council considers bill punishing buyers of counterfeit goods
It’s one of the worst kept secrets in New York City. Read more: CBS New York/AP

Schneiderman, mourning dad push for cellphone theft prevention tech

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Thursday put a human face on the scourge of smartphone thefts to pressure cellphone makers to improve anti-theft technologies. Read more: New York Daily News

NFL to limit bags brought into stadiums 

Bring yourself to the game. Leave the cooler and backpack at home. Read more: NBC New York

Newtown shooting: 6 months later

Six months after the Newtown school shooting, the tragedy will be marked with a moment of silence, the reading of thousands of names of gun violence victims and calls around the country to pass legislation expanding background checks for gun purchases. Read more: AP

Upstate casino bill could stop plan for full gaming at Resorts World


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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It could be no dice for full gaming at Resorts World Casino New York City if a new bill in Albany goes through.

A full gaming bill would allow games such as blackjack, roulette and poker to be legal in New York. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan, the Upstate NY Gaming Economic Development Act, calls for three upstate casinos if the referendum is passed by voters in November. A downstate casino — anything south of Putnam and Rockland Counties — would have to wait until the first upstate one has opened five years from now.

Queens legislators have said if New York City is left out, it would kill 1,000 expected jobs and an economic boost for south Queens.

Cuomo first introduced the idea during his State of the State address this January. It was part of a push for more upstate tourism.

The legislature has until June 20 to negotiate and pass the bill through both the Senate and Assembly before ending for the summer.

Cuomo emphasized his priorities on WNYC’s “Capitol Pressroom” on Tuesday, June 11.

“That’s about the upstate economy,” he said. “We’re trying to keep the emphasis on upstate.”

Queens legislators and business leaders held a press conference on May 28 calling for a “fair share” in the gaming bill.

They argued that Resorts World could expand by January 2014 if voters approve gaming this November.

Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder, whose district includes the Racino, said the area needs jobs and further economic activity in the wake of Sandy. He contends that expanding gaming at Resorts World would give the needed push.

“I think that [the bill]’s a good starting point, but I don’t see how I can support a bill that doesn’t recognize the need for job creation in southern Queens and Rockaway,” he said. “Since Sandy, Queens is even more in need of the economic boost that the casino will provide. I’m hopeful the governor will recognize that as well.”

State Senator John Bonacic, chair of the Senate’s Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee, has been supportive of Resorts World becoming a full casino if the bill is passed. He called for the governor to change the gaming plan to include Queens and put the kibosh on any ideas for a casino in Nassau County.

Bonacic has proposed a bill that would establish upstate casinos before granting two casinos to Queens or Westchester County between 2019 and 2021.

“Long Islanders and New York City residents are open to gaming in Queens, as the success of the Aqueduct VLT [Video Lottery Terminal] casino has shown,” Bonacic said.

State Senator Joseph Addabbo said he could not support Cuomo’s bill in its current form. If Cuomo’s bill passes both chambers, Addabbo said voters might not support a plan that leaves the city out.

“The people vote no,” he said, “This whole thing comes down like a house of cards.”

 

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Call for full gaming at Resorts World Casino


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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Politicians and leaders in the Queens business community are calling for the state to ante up on full gaming in Queens.

State legislators and the Queens Chamber of Commerce called for a better plan to give Queens a casino if voters approve table gaming this November. They said Resorts World Casino New York City could become a full casino just months after the referendum is passed.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has said if complete gaming is approved, an upstate casino will be the first to reap the benefits and drive tourism north. Queens might not get a casino until five years after the referendum passes.

The Queens Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Director Jack Friedman said both upstate and downstate New York will have an opportunity for full casinos if voters approve them.

“We’re saying to the governor, this is not an either-or proposition,” Friedman said. “There’s room for both. Let’s do it now. Resorts World is ready, willing and able to take on table gaming, and it would be a big, big boost to the Queens economy.”

The Racino has boasted more than a billion dollars in total revenue – a large amount of which goes back to the state for education – along with employment opportunities for locals.

Councilmember Leroy Comrie said the Racino has hired many people in his district. He added that more jobs from full gaming would help unemployed people in Queens, especially those affected by Sandy.

State Senator Joseph Addabbo, whose district includes Resorts World, said the Racino could have table games as early as January 2014 if Queens is approved under the state’s plan.

Both Addabbo and Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder said they and their communities could not wait up to five years for full gaming to come to Queens.

Addabbo said he is pushing for a sooner start time if a casino is cleared for south Queens. In the remaining five weeks the legislature is in session, the senator said there are still considerable discussions that have to take place.

“We are in uncharted territory here,” Addabbo said. “This is an unpaved road for our state. We’ve never been in a position like this before for full gaming.”

Goldfeder said the tools were already at Resorts World to set up expanded gaming at the facility.

“Infrastructure is already in place,” he said. “Anybody who’s been there knows there’s a third floor ready to expand, to house the table games. You have a trusted partner that is willing. You have a location that is perfect and now is the time.”

 

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Firefighter makes way back to boxing for a cause


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence M. Cullen

Jack Kirrane took a five year break from the FDNY’s Bravest Boxing team.

From 2007 to 2012, the Queens-born firefighter focused on being a father and doing his normal duty at Ladder 38 in Harlem.

Over the last year, however, Kirrane, 37, has been staging a comeback into the sport he started in as a kid growing up in Douglaston.

“It’s actually probably the best it’s been so far,” Kirrane said of his fighting and conditioning. “Now, being older, I stick more to my training regimen, instead of before when I was younger.”

Kirrane, who joined Bravest Boxing 10 years ago, faced off against John Butler of the London Metro Police department in the latest installment of the “Battle of the Badges” on Friday, April 12 at Resorts World Casino New York City.

Kirrane and Butler, both fighting with a similar orthodox style in the 178 master class, battled for all three of their two-minute rounds. When Kirrane swung, Butler swung. Butler threw a right, Kirrane, expectedly, blocked.

Facing off against a style similar to his own, Kirrane said was “fun when you win. That style can be very punishing at the other end too.”

In the end, the referees deemed Kirrane the winner, giving him a 5-0 record against the Brits, making it three victories stateside; two across the pond.

It was, Kirrane said, a good way to continue his record since coming back last year: 3-0.

Aside from meeting with teammates every Tuesday and Thursday to spar in Brooklyn, Kirrane, like many other firefighters, has to train on his own free time – something that’s a precious commodity.

Because cardio is more important that weight lifting when getting ready for a fight, Kirrane said he’s mapped out a three-and-a-half mile course to run around his Nassau neighborhood. When he’s off, taking care of his children, he will normally put them in a double stroller and bring them along.

“It’s very difficult to find the time to train. Especially [when] you’re getting close to a fight, you’ve got to train more.”

Spending the first 33 years of his life in Queens, Kirrane and his brother were introduced to boxing at a young age by their father, who was a member of the New York Athletic Club in Manhattan. The brothers Kirrane, now both firefighters, trained in the club’s Saturday morning youth program.

But what Kirrane said drove him to shake the rust off relatively quickly was the causes Bravest Boxing fights for.

All monies raised at the April 12 fight, which featured six other men’s bouts and two women’s, went to Building Homes for Heroes, which builds houses for disabled Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. Along with this charity, Bravest Boxing in the past has helped other veterans’ charities such as Wounded Warriors.

“Whenever we’re fighting over here it’s for charity,” he said. “It’s definitely very rewarding when you’re boxing for charity. It [training and fighting] makes it a lot easier when you’re doing it for a good cause.”

 

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FDNY to take on London Police Department in charity boxing match


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Bob McGuire

Ding, ding: the bell goes ring.

Some of New York’s Bravest are going against London’s Finest in a Battle of the Badges at Resorts World Casino New York City on Friday, April 12. Ten blaze battlers will trade blows with bobbies on the Racino’s third floor to raise money for Building Homes for Heroes, which builds handicapped-accessible homes for disabled war veterans.

“There’s a lot of department pride at stake,” said organizer Bob McGuire.

This isn’t the first time the two forces have danced in the ring, though. They squared off at the World Police/Fire Games a few years back, McGuire said, and FDNY officers went to London last year. They didn’t fare well, going 6-4, against the Brits, but McGuire said he hopes this year will be different.

“We hope to return the favor this year,” he said of the impending rematch.

In total, McGuire said FDNY Boxing has donated about $200,000 to veteran-related charities since September 11.

In the last few years, he said, the organization has donated moneys raised, after expenses are paid, to Building Homes for Heroes. FDNY Boxing donated a $5,000 check to the charity on February 27 to help build homes for veterans.

Organizers got paired up with the charity after it built a home for quadruple-amputee and Staten Island native Brendan Marrocco.

“That’s when we first got involved,” McGuire said. “It just seemed like a great fit.”

 

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Resorts World revenue up while neighboring casinos down


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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Cha-ching.

Revenue and money played at Resorts World Casino New York City is on the rise compared to a year ago, while neighboring gaming zones are seeing a drop.

In January and February 2013, the Racino had an 11-percent tax revenue increase and a 25-percent increase in amount played from the same time last year — the first full year Resorts World has been able to produce in its now 15 months of business. The combined months had $2.4 billion played, leading to $116 million in total revenue.

In return, the Racino sent almost $80 million back to the state — as always, earmarked for education and the racing industry.

The spike in numbers also comes as a surprise with a shorter February this year, as 2012 was a leap year with a 29-day month.

“Resorts World Casino New York City’s model has continued to maximize gaming revenue for New York State in a manner that has not been replicated by any other facility in the nation in our nearly year and a half of operation,” said president Michael Speller in a statement. “2013 is shaping up to be another record setting year, and we are proud to contribute this astonishing amount of revenue towards the education of New York’s students.” Meanwhile, Pennsylvania’s slot revenue hot streak might be over. For February, revenue for the state’s 11 casinos was down more than 9 percent from last year — something Resorts World proponents say is in part thanks to New York gamblers staying home to bet.

Last February, there were only 10 operating casinos in the Keystone State — Valley Forge Casino Resort opened last March — and those, compared to last year, are down a combined 11.5 percent.

The success at Resorts World has proponents again saying the Racino should have full gaming, if voters approve an amendment for it this November.

Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder said the upswing for Resorts World is just another component for the Racino to get full gaming – should voters approve a state amendment for it this November.

“New records set by Resorts World is further example that Genting is the right partner and Aqueduct is the right location for a larger facility and full, enhanced gaming,” he said. “We’ve got to give them the tools to continue to be successful.”

 

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Resorts World Casino brings in record-breaking $1.2 billion


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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They did it again.

Resorts World Casino New York City officials announced they broke the bank once again after patrons spent $1.2 billion in the facility’s two floors of games last December — the most to go through a Racino in state history.

The Racino took back just about half of that, with $59.2 million in revenue and $42 million going back to the state in tax revenue. Continuing to earmark money for specific programs, $26 million will go to New York’s Education Fund.

Resorts World President Michael Speller lauded the record, noting it was a good way to kick off the New Year with high hopes for 2013.

“Resorts World Casino is breaking records on a regular basis,” Speller said. “With more visitors than ever coming through our doors, it’s clear that New Yorkers and tourists alike know that Resorts World Casino New York City is a world-class gaming experience right here in Queens – just minutes, not hours away. With a fantastic first year in the books, we look forward to doing even more to improve the gaming and entertainment experience in 2013.”

This caps off a record-breaking year for state gaming, with Resorts World sending $460 million back to the state, according to Racino representatives. Of that intake, $295 million was allocated for education. The remaining revenue has usually been earmarked for programs for the racing industry.

New modes of transportation are leading to increased numbers of gamers walking through the Racino’s doors. These include an upgraded A train stop at the Aqueduct site and a new visitor’s center at the arcade shops at Sutphin Boulevard.

 

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Pols say ‘no dice’ to no downstate full gaming


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

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Governor Andrew Cuomo pulled a wild card last week.

New York will get seven new casinos if voters approve a full-gaming amendment this fall, Cuomo said during his State of the State address. Most of these casinos, however, will be upstate — particularly in the Finger Lake region — to drive tourism to other areas of New York.

The news has some elected officials working to ensure Resorts World Casino New York City will continue growing in South Ozone Park and creating jobs in the area.

Immediately after the governor’s generalized proposal on gaming in the state, State Senator Joseph Addabbo texted Cuomo staffers about the statement; Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder got to Twitter. Both officials, who represent the Aqueduct property and surrounding neighborhoods, are working to ensure that Resorts World becomes one of those seven full-gaming casinos.

The governor’s proposal was open for interpretation, Addabbo said, and the already-built Racino is prime for table games. Should gaming laws pass this fall, Addabbo said the Racino’s proximity to JFK Airport makes it the prime place for further development and could build up the burgeoning area.

“There’s too many facts here that cannot be ignored to say, ‘no, we’re not doing a full-fledged casino there,’” Addabbo said. “That would be an irrational thought.”

Goldfeder likewise said future expansion at Aqueduct was crucial to job growth and economic impact in south Queens.

“Especially post-Sandy, we need to create jobs and spur, boost our economy,” he said. “And putting gaming at Aqueduct would do exactly that.”

Resorts World executives are confident the company’s partnership will continue to grow, said spokesperson Stefan Friedman. Executives also plan on continuing to generate revenue for the state, particularly for education. “We remain interested in enhancing the extremely successful partnership with New York State that has led to Resorts World’s status as the number one slot machine revenue generator in entire country and look forward to reviewing the governor’s proposal to facilitate economic development in Upstate New York,” Friedman said in a statement.

Both the senator and assemblymember said they expect the pre-developed land used for a venue that would bring more visitors to the area. Having full gaming at Resorts World would only help that cause, Goldfeder said.

“We’ve got a lot of big plans for that site and enhanced gaming would be a great anchor,” he said. “But I’m confident that, working with the governor, we’re going to come to a real conclusion that would be in the best interest of the community.”

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Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Overcast. High of 37 with a windchill as low as 19F. Winds from the West at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 20%. Monday night: Overcast with a chance of snow and a chance of rain, then a chance of snow after midnight. Low of 32F with a windchill as low as 25. Winds from the West at 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 20%.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Resorts World New Year’s Eve Bash

Ring in 2013 at Resorts World Casino’s New Year’s Eve Bash from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., where there will be live music, champagne and giveaways. Click here for more info or check out more New Year’s Eve events in Queens

Driver charged with DWI in fatal Queens crash

The driver of a car that overturned into the marshy waters near John F. Kennedy International Airport early Sunday morning, killing a 25-year-old woman, has been arrested. Read more: NBC New York

2 charged with teen’s murder in Far Rockaway

Two suspects were charged Sunday in connection with a shooting this weekend that left a 17-year-old boy dead outside a low-income housing development in Far Rockaway. Read more: CBS New York

Psychiatric test ordered for subway shove suspect

A woman accused of pushing a man to his death in front of a subway train told police she did so because she blamed Muslims for the Sept. 11 attacks, and because “I thought it would be cool,” prosecutors said at a court hearing. Read more: ABC New York/AP

President Obama’s determined to get a gun-control law in place early in his second term

President Obama called the Newtown school massacre “the worst day” of his presidency as he reiterated Sunday his determination to sign a gun-control bill into law early in his second term. Read more: New York Daily News

Hillary Clinton hospitalized after doctors discover blood clot

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was admitted to a New York hospital Sunday after the discovery of a blood clot stemming from the concussion she sustained earlier this month. Read more: AP

Fiscal cliff: Biden, McConnell make major progress

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Vice President Joe Biden made major progress toward a year-end tax bill overnight. Read more: Politico

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST

Tuesday: Overcast in the morning, then mostly cloudy. High of 61. Winds from the South at 5 to 10 mph. Tuesday night: Mostly cloudy in the evening, then overcast with a chance of rain. Low of 52. Winds from the SW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

EVENT of the DAY: Copy Cat at Resorts World Casino New York City

See Copy Cat perform tonight at Resorts World. The band describes themselves as four guys who can be anyone you want them to be, playing anything from Bob Marley to Limp Bizkit to Frank Sinatra. But what we really makes them unique are the sounds of the Caribbean: Soca, Calypso, Reggae, anything that will get you off your chair and onto the dance floor. Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Queens woman charged in 28-year-old cold case

A Queens woman is under arrest, accused in a murder that happened in Louisiana nearly three decades ago. Read more: ABC New York

Bloomberg asked Clinton to consider succeeding him as mayor

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg has long struggled to imagine a successor with the combination of star power, experience and grit to fill his shoes. Read more: New York Times

Man pushed in front of train, killed, at Midtown subway station

Police on Monday night released new surveillance video in the search for a suspect who shoved a man onto the subway tracks for a train to strike him and kill him. Read more: CBS New York

City violations an added insult to storm victims in Queens

Queens civic leaders and homeowners are furious with city officials for allowing inspectors to slap them with violations just days after Superstorm Sandy sent trees crashing into their homes. Read more: New York Daily News

FEMA has more than 100 unused, winterized trailers in Pennsylvania lot

Anthony Avena, his wife and three children managed to escape the flood waters — he said it was like “living in an action movie. But now it will be a while before they can move back into their home. Read more: NY1

U.S. Navy denies Iran drone capture claim

Iran said on Tuesday it had captured a U.S. intelligence drone in its airspace over the Gulf in the last few days, but the U.S. military quickly denied having lost any unmanned aircraft in the Middle East. Read more: Reuters

 

 

Resorts World celebrates first year


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

COURIER FILE PHOTO/Photo by Steve Mosco

A wager on a South Ozone Park casino a year ago turned out to be a good bet for jobs, and for all of Queens.

A year after Resorts World Casino New York City opened its doors, there has been a lot to talk about. In that time, the Racino has seen millions go in and out, several boxing matches and concerts, and even a robbery.

“Resorts World Casino has been an incredible success overall for Queens, for New York City and also the state as a whole,” said Resorts World president Michael Speller.

The Racino has sent more than $410 million in tax revenue back to the state toward education, the racing industry and other state-run programs. The casino, and parent company Genting, is committed to giving back to the community and the state where it’s found a home, Speller said.

“Clearly [it is] a great outcome for education; a great outcome to the state,” he said, adding that of the tax revenue sent back, roughly $263 million, was earmarked for education. “It’s been a great experience. We’ve been accepted by the community, we’ve worked hard with the community and it’s been a great experience over the last year.”

More than a million people walked through the Racino’s doors in July, two months after Genting announced Resorts World had beaten out Atlantic City and Las Vegas for slot machine revenue.

In June, however, a man later identified by the Queens District Attorney’s office as Kevin Lides, entered the second floor and handed a note to a teller. Lides was able to make off with about $63,000, but was caught just a month later in northwest Pennsylvania — in part from the surveillance system at Resorts World and collaboration with the 106th Precinct.

Speller said the casino’s security staff has worked closely with the 106th since inception and the working relationship continues daily.

The future of Resorts World has even crossed in to the hotly contested Senate District 15 election. Both incumbent Senator Joseph Addabbo and Councilmember Eric Ulrich said at a recent debate they believe in full gaming at all of New York’s seven racetrack casinos. At the same time, Addabbo said he hoped as the number of jobs at the Racino increases, the number of Queens-based employees there should as well. Ulrich said if gaming laws in the state were to expand, Resorts World must continue to be a responsible neighbor.

Resorts World currently employs just over 1,750 people, Speller said, about 1,100 of whom live in Queens. Executives promised last year that 70 percent of its employees would be based in Queens, though that was based on a projected 850 employees.

“Creating jobs is a big focus for everybody,” Speller said. “Obviously we continue to work on that. It’s a commitment that is not a one-time commitment. We continue to do whatever we can to improve on that.”

Throughout the entire growth of Resorts World, the community has been involved.

Liaisons from Resorts World attend the monthly Community Board 10 meetings, and executives meet with the board once a month to hear community feedback, Speller said.

“So it’s been a very collaborative and successful relationship between us and CB 10,” he said. “They tell us what the things are we need to be looking at and we respond to that.”

Board chair Elizabeth Braton likewise said Resorts World has lived up to all of its commitments to the surrounding neighborhoods, and had been responsive with any issues or comments.

“Their community relations are excellent,” she said. “They have ensured they have had a person available to just about any organization in the area to attend their meetings, and listen to people’s concerns and answer questions.”

But aside from enhanced gaming, which Speller says could find a home on the Racino’s open third floor, there is still more development on the horizon. Talks between the state and Genting for what would have been the nation’s largest convention center broke down in June, leaving plans at a standstill and sending developers back to the drawing board. Talks for a convention center, or other development at Aqueduct, would be held off until 2013, when voters will decide on proposed gaming law changes.

Assemblymember Phillip Goldfeder, a proponent of Resorts World and more jobs and business in the region, said plans for Aqueduct were not done yet. In order to help south Queens continue to grow as a destination in the borough, Goldfeder said the state needed to give Resorts World and Genting the tools it needed to grow, particularly full gaming and better, faster transportation.

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com


TODAY’S FORECAST: 

Tuesday: Partly cloudy in the morning, then clear. High of 61. Breezy. Winds from the WNW at 10 to 20 mph. Tuesday night: Partly cloudy. Low of 48. Winds from the NW at 5 to 10 mph.

EVENT OF THE DAY: Live Classical Music

A special presentation of classical music featuring the artistry of soloist Lesley Zlabinger with Catherine Frank on piano. The program will include the song cycle “Frauenliebe und-leben” by Robert Schumann; three songs by Claude Debussy, “Nuit d’etoiles,” “Voice que le printemps” and “Paysage sentimental;” the secular cantata “Lucrezia” by G.F. Handel; and four songs by Mozart, “Ridente la calma,” “Warnung,” “Als luise die briefe” and “An chloe.” Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

Fight over proposed Queens Kickshaw bike corral could be paved over with compromise in Astoria

The battle over a proposed bike rack in front of an Astoria eatery may come to a hault. Read more: New York Daily News

Queens landlord wanted in teacher murder nabbed in Maryland

The Queens landlord wanted for questioning in the stabbing death of a 39-year-old public school teacher has been caught in Maryland, authorities said Monday. Read more: NBC New York

Roughly half of Aqueduct racino’s top managers reside in the borough

The operator of the Aqueduct racino released new jobs data this month showing that about half of its top executives call Queens home. Read more: New York Daily News

A ‘match’ for Nobel

Two American scholars — one of them born in Queens — netted the Nobel economics prize yesterday for work on a matchmaking technique that has sharply reduced the number of New York students who end up in high schools they didn’t want to attend. Read more: New York Post

Mayoral hopeful switches to G.O.P.

The field of likely Democratic candidates for New York City mayor narrowed by one on Monday when Tom Allon, a newspaper publisher waging a long-shot bid, announced that he would switch to the Republican Party to increase his odds of making it to the 2013 general election ballot. Read more: New York Times

Brooklyn Nets win their Barclays Center debut game

The Brooklyn Nets won their first basketball game at the new Barclays Center against the Washington Wizards on Monday night, and the preseason victory marked the first time professional sports were played in the borough since the Dodgers left in 1957. Read more: NY1

Pundits: Hofstra presidential debate could easily mean doom for rhe loser

All eyes in the United States and around the world will soon be on a Long Island university. Read more: CBS New York