Cuomo releases gaming plan for Upstate

By ANDREW DONOVAN

ALBANY, N.Y. (WKTV) - Governor Andrew Cuomo is working to create jobs and boost tourism in Upstate New York and unveiled a resort gaming plan to do so.

Cuomo's plan primarily involves building state-run casinos in different regions in Upstate New York.

The plan divides Upstate New York into six regions, and those regions would place bids to be awarded one of three resorts.

Three of the defined regions already are home to casinos, operated by Indian Nations. Casinos that have exclusivity agreements with the state, primarily based on revenue sharing, would continue to have that contract honored if the casino is in good standing.

The winning bids will be based on certain criteria including the number of jobs, amount of investment planned, local support, among other things.

Revenue will be broken down in this format: 10% for local municipalities, 10% for counties in the region and 80% for the state. The revenue would be used for state education aid above the annual formula, property tax relief, and reimbursement for local costs.

"For years neighboring states like Connecticut and New Jersey have benefited from New Yorkers leaving our state to visit their gaming facilities. We want to reverse this trend by putting new resort destinations in Upstate New York," the governor said.

The Governor's office says nearly 35,000 jobs are associated with gaming in New Jersey.

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