Coalition Created To Back Casino Amendment
A coalition of business interests along with private and public sector unions have formed a coalition to back the amendment to expand non-Indian casinos.
The group, called NY Jobs Now, includes Heather Bricetti, the president and CEO of the state Business Council, along with labor leaders like the AFL-CIO’s Mario Cilento, UFT President Michael Mulgrew, Gary LaBarbera of Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York and former New York City Comptroller Bill Thompson.
Thurman Thomas, the former Buffalo Bills running back, is also on part of the coalition, along with Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
Broadly, the coalition is composed of allies of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who pushed the passage of the amendment through the Legislature, along with enabling legislation this year that would allow for up to four casinos north of the New York City area in the first phase of the construction.
The composition is also some ways reminiscent of the now-defunct Committee to Save New York, the pro-business group that backed the governor’s fiscal agenda during his first two years in office, though no elected officials were counted among its members.
“New Yorkers spend more than three billion dollars a year at destination casinos in other states. It’s about time we bring that kind of money home to create jobs, support schools, and take property tax pressure off towns and cities,” Briccetti said in a statement.
The casinos would be limited to the Southern Tier, the Catskills and the Capital Region during the first round in order to adhere to new exclusivity and revenue agreements Cuomo struck with the state’s American Indian tribes.
The formation of the coalition, nearly a month before voters are due to consider the amendment, comes as a Siena College poll found a majority of voters would vote in favor the casino expansion based on the rather favorable wording on the ballot that touts economic development, property tax relief and education spending as upsides.
The state’s Catholic Bishops on Sunday released a statement expressing concern with the expansion of gambling in New York under the amendment.
It is unclear how the group’s support will manifest itself, though it is likely advertisements and other promotions will be committed to the effort.
The full roster of NY Jobs Now is after the jump.
J. Patrick Barrett, CEO of CARPAT Investments
Steve Bellone, Suffolk County Executive
Heather C. Briccetti, Esq., President and CEO of The Business Council of New York State
Byron W. Brown, Mayor of Buffalo
James W. Cahill, President of the New York State Building & Construction Trades Council
Mario Cilento, President of the New York State AFL-CIO
Michael J. Falcone, Chairman Emeritus & Founder, The Pioneer Companies
Gary LaBarbera, President of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York
Kevin S. Law, President and CEO of the Long Island Association
Richard S. Lefrak, Chairman, President and CEO of the LeFrak Organization
Adam E. Madkour, CEO of the Saratoga Spring Water Company
Michael Mulgrew, President of the United Federation of Teachers
Thurman Thomas, President and CEO of Thurman Thomas Sports Training, Hall of Fame former Buffalo Bills running back
William C. Thompson, Former New York City Comptroller, former Chief Administrative Officer and Senior Managing Director at Siebert, Brandford, Shank & Co.
Peter Ward, President of the New York Hotel Trades Council
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on September 30, 2013 at 4:40 pm, and is filed under Andrew Cuomo, Gaming. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|
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