The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has renewed Mount Airy Casino Resort’s gaming license for an additional three years after all seven member of the board voted in favor of renewing the license. The board conducted a month long review into the performance of the Mount Airy Casino Resort which also included a hearing held in April 2016 in the Paradise Township, where the casino is located.
The April board meeting was also attended by Lisa DeNaples, the head of the DeNaples family trust which is responsible for running the casino. During the review, the board looked into the revenue generated by the casino, its recent investments, employment opportunities, economic impact, employee benefits and training programs.
The Mount Airy Casino Resort in Pennsylvania opened in October 2007 and since then has generated over $1.6 billion in gross gaming revenues from its table games and slot machines. This has in turn generated around $800 million in gaming taxes for the state government. The casino has recently invested $5 million to renovate its 188 hotel rooms and is expected to complete the project before the end of this year. Some of the other improvements in recent times include upgrading an 18 hole golf course and investing $6 million in 2014 to develop an ultra pool that features outdoor and indoor pools, restaurant and bar, spa and a stage.
The casino which currently employs around 1,100 individuals had to convince the gaming board that it was prepared to handle competition from neighboring casinos that could come up in New Jersey and New York since nearly thirty percent of its patrons come from New Jersey. Mount Airy Casino Resort General Manager John Culetsu told the board that the casino ran a lean operation and was confident it could handle it own destiny. Culetsu stated that should New Jersey and New York open new casinos, Mount Airy will be able to adjust to market demands.
Voters in New Jersey are expected to vote on November 8 on a referendum to move casinos out of Atlantic City. Should voters decide in favor of the referendum, then a casino in the Catskills could pose stiff competition for the Mount Airy casino. New York approved three casino licenses in December 2015 and one of them is for the Montreign Resort Casino which is currently being developed on the former Concord Resort site.
The new liquor sales expansion law in Pennsylvania came into effect earlier this week would have allowed the Mount Airy casino to apply for a 24/7 casino liquor license. Culetsu confirmed that the casino did not apply for the $1 million liquor license.