Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Slot Proposal Has Been Made

Well......Governor Martin O'Malley has official released his slot proposal to the citizens of Maryland.

O'Malley said his plan calls for up to 9,500 state-owned and operated machines at several locations throughout the state, including racetracks and what O'Malley referred to as "destinations". When the plan is fully implemented after four years, O'Malley said slots would pump as much as $550 million annually into the state.

An additional $100 million would subsidize Maryland's horse racing industry, he said.

The subsidy to horse racing is great. The breeders, owners, trainers and so on must be thrilled. What do the fine people at Magna think about state owned machines? They just purchased the remaining 49% of the Maryland Jockey Club yesterday, and they will never see a dime of the slot money. The purses will be increased at Laurel and Pimlico, but will that increase attendance at the tracks? If the state plans on putting these state owned and operated machines at race tracks, will they track owner get to charge an arm and a leg for rent? I hope someone can give me some clarifications on this, and an economics lesson?????

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind that when Frank Stronach first purchased the Maryland tracks, he said, would we take slots? yes, but we are not a gaming company. Now he will get the opportunity to prove it. What company wouldn't want $100 million pumped into its monopoly industry? The racing commission has repeatedly said, give the industry a fighting chance to stand on its own with a level playing field and it will beat down delaware and west virginia (Pa? Hmm). That's what magna is going to get. The maryland tracks, with a little thing called the preakness, already make money, even against insurmountable odds. If Magna gripes too much, they're going to blow it. They should take this ball, any ball, and run with it. We're going to find out what kind of company this is in a hurry if the o'malley plan passes. Let's hope they don't tear down Laurel and Pimlico and put up another GP. One monstrosity is enough.

Keith said...

There's no reason why Magna should ever "see a dime of the slot money". If they can't make a go of it as a subsidized monopoly, it's time to throw in the towel. If the track owners try "to charge an arm and a leg for rent", Maryland should take the horse racing subsidies out of the package. The $100 million subsidy IS "an arm and a leg" worth of rent. Casino gambling shouldn't be coming to Maryland unless the benefits are maximized for all Marylanders.

 

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