November 3, 2007
Senator Sonny McCullough and his 2nd District Assembly running mates John Amodeo and Vince Polistina today said that Senate President Richard Codey?s advocacy for the installation of thousands of video lottery terminals at New Jersey race tracks will have a devastating impact on the casino industry in Atlantic City.
?Apparently Senate President Codey has neither understanding of, nor respect for, the importance of the gaming industry and the casinos to this region of the state,? McCullough said. ?And this is the man who my opponent Jim Whelan will support for Senate President if he is elected.?
In a story in today?s Press of Atlantic City, Codey criticized a report calling for a limited number of video lottery terminals at the Meadowlands saying that it wasn?t enough and the state needed to put many more terminals there ? and adding that the state should put additional video lottery terminals at two Monmouth County racetracks.
Codey is quoted in the story as saying that, ?Putting 2,100 VLTs at the Meadowlands is a ridiculously low number. That’s like a toy store at the holidays hiring only one employee,? and suggesting a limited number of additional VLT?s in Monmouth County. The state study predicted that casino revenue would fall by about 2 percent, or around $100 million annually, if the three racetracks get 6,300 VLT?s.
?The casino industry is a vital economic engine for this region and we cannot stand by silently while the Democrats seek to undermine that industry,? Amodeo said. ?The people of the 2nd District need legislators who will go to Trenton and fight these plans ? no legislators who will be rubber stamps for the Democrat leadership proposing this plan.?
?The people and businesses of this region who thrive off the success of the casinos simply cannot afford this plan which will cost the industry as much as $100 million,? Polistina said. ?This will cost our region jobs, revenue and tourism that has started to revitalize Atlantic City.?
??We know from the disastrous casino shutdown of last year that Whelan will side with the political bosses who line his campaign coffers. And if Whelan wins this year, we can expect him to walk lockstep with his Senator Codey on VLTs at racetracks, threatening our regional economy once again and leading to lost jobs,? said Senator McCullough.
McCullough, Amodeo and Polistina said they will fight this plan when they arrive in Trenton.