The game is officially on in New York state.
After months of buzz about developers planning to apply for the state’s first four Class III casino licenses, gaming commissioners are about to hear from serious contenders.
Lee Park, gaming commission spokesman, said the March 31 request for applications is “a milestone that formally begins the process that applicants have been waiting for.”
In response to the 80-page RFA, each applicant must provide a resolution of support from its would-be host community, pay a $1 million application fee, and prove it is able to pay licensing fees that will run as high as $70 million.
The siting board will judge the applicants based largely on the potential for economic activity and business development in their regions. Those factors will constitute 70 percent of the total “score.”
“Economic growth, good jobs and enhancement to the region and community are paramount to this effort, and we look forward to seeing what bidders have to offer,” said siting board member William Thompson.
Local support will account for 20 percent of the decision, according to the RFA, and applicants must demonstrate support from a variety of sources other than the local government.
The final 10 percent of the decision will be based on workforce enhancement.
The four casinos will be located in the Catskills, the Capital Region and Southern Tier/Finger Lakes regions, with one area getting two casinos.