The proposed purchase of Yonkers Raceway along with the adjacent Empire City Casino by American casino operator, MGM Resorts International, has reportedly been delayed after the New York State Gaming Commission cancelled its meeting to approve the acquisitions.
Deals in jeopardy:
According to a Thursday report from USA Today, MGM Resorts International unveiled a plan in May that is to involve it spending some $850 million in order to buy the southern New York facilities from Yonkers Racing Corporation, which is controlled by well-known millionaire businessman, Tim Rooney.
However, the newspaper reported that these deals are now at risk and cited Brad Maione, a spokesperson for the New York State Gaming Commission, as declaring that today’s required approval hearing had been ‘postponed until further notice’ due to ‘issues with a quorum of members.’
Long-term expansion possibilities:
Opened in 1899, Yonkers Raceway features a half-mile dirt standard-bred harness racing track, while its attached Empire City Casino ‘racino’ has for over twelve years offered patrons the chance to enjoy thousands of video lottery terminals. USA Today reported that MGM Resorts International seemingly has plans that would see the Yonkers site transformed into a full-scale resort casino but that this expansion is likely set to be delayed by at least four years due to expanded state-wide gaming legislation that was ratified in 2013.
Mayor reveals discussions:
The newspaper reported that Bill Hornbuckle, President for Las Vegas-headquartered MGM Resorts International, used an official December statement to state that he was ‘thrilled to welcome’ Yonkers Raceway and the Empire City Casino into his firm’s ‘family’ of facilities. The executive moreover proclaimed that the venues are ‘already known for [their] world-class integrated gaming, racing and dining experience’ while the mayor for Yonkers, Mike Spano, subsequently told USA Today that the operator had discussed plans to bring a new hotel and entertainment venue to the 97-acre site.
Spano reportedly told USA Today…
“I’ve had a number of conversations with [MGM Resorts International]. Clearly, it is very guarded about what its plans are. That being said, it has said over and over again that it does have plans and that these are huge plans.”
Growing East Coast portfolio:
USA Today reported that MGM Resorts International is already responsible for two nearby casino resorts encompassing Atlantic City’s giant, Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa, as well as the new MGM Springfield facility in Massachusetts. The operator used an official event in December to name Uri Clinton (pictured) as the new President and Chief Operating Officer for its New York ventures although it has since refused to release any detailed information as to what may be next for Westchester County facilities.
Hornbuckle’s December statement reportedly read…
“We look forward to further solidifying MGM Resorts International’s presence as the entertainment leader on the East Coast and in the New York City region.”