Casinos Offer Cut to Locals - Sunday 26th of February 2006

PENNSYLVANIA – As reported by the Philadelphia Inquirer: "Casino operators vying for licenses to run slot parlors along the I-95 corridor are promising to pour money into city neighborhoods.

"The funds, they say, would be used to plant foliage, repair infrastructure, install security cameras, and even create scholarships.

"In private meetings that began this month, casino operators Sugar House Gaming and Pinnacle Entertainment and investors who want to build Riverwalk Casino met with elected officials and community leaders. The meetings, organized by Councilman Frank DiCicco, have not been open to the public.

"…Five companies are seeking two licenses to operate in Philadelphia. Four of the proposed sites are in DiCicco's district, along Delaware Avenue/Columbus Boulevard from Fishtown to Pennsport.

"A fifth operator, Trump Entertainment Inc., wants to build a casino at the former Budd plant site in Nicetown.

"…Riverwalk Casino chief executive Patrick McKoy said he told people at the meeting that the company was prepared to make 'a significant contribution' to the community.

"…Trump Casinos began meeting with community leaders and the general population near the Budd site weeks ago, according to Larry Ceisler, a spokesman for the group.

"…Other casino interests seeking slots approval from the state gaming board have been offering benefits to community members…"

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