Ahead of the planned opening of the Suffolk OTB Islandia facility later this month, operator Delaware North Companies has presented the mayor for the venue’s Long Island host community with two checks worth over $2.5 million.

Part of the Buffalo-based operator’s August agreement with the village of Islandia, the payments totalled $2,532,400 and were handed over at a special ceremony yesterday attended by local mayor Allan Dorman and Louis Jacobs, Co-Chief Executive Officer for Delaware North Companies.

Dorman revealed that the first payment for $1,532,400 would be used to complete construction of the community’s First Responders Recreation Field while the second check for $1 million is to be employed for tax relief with residents set to see their taxes reduced by 50% over the next two years.

A slots-only project of Suffolk County Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation and due to be located inside the Islandia Marriott Long Island hotel, which is owned by Delaware North Companies, Suffolk OTB Islandia is expected to open by the end of February offering some 250 machines before this complement is increased to 1,000 by the summer.

In addition to these initial payments, Delaware North Companies explained that its deal, which can be reviewed every two years, will moreover see it award the New York village with $47 million over the next two decades while Suffolk County Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation earlier told the local Newsday newspaper that it expects the new Suffolk County venue to record estimated annual profits of around $164.25 million.

As well as video lottery terminals, Suffolk OTB Islandia will offer a pair of off-track betting and simulcast kiosks with the newspaper reporting that Suffolk County Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation has guaranteed to pay Suffolk County a minimum of $13 million over the next ten years including $2 million in 2018. County officials are moreover set to receive $3 million in 2019, although this figure could rise if revenues exceed certain levels, as well as $1 million annually thereafter until 2027.

“These payments are providing real tax relief to village residents,” said Dorman. “As promised, the village already reduced property taxes this year by 25% and will reduce taxes by another 25% in 2018. This, combined with the village’s continued elimination of a garbage tax, saves residents about $700 a year. This is money in your pocket. This agreement will protect the financial security of the entire village. Business owners will also get this tax relief and enable them to expand their business needs in Islandia that creates much-needed jobs for local residents.”