The Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce
and the Saratoga Convention and
Tourism Bureau will co-host a “fact-finding
roundtable presentation” on casino gambling
at 7 p.m. Monday, Dec. 16, at the Saratoga
Springs City Center.
It will be moderated by Matt Jones, of the
Jones Firm, who is also vice chairman of the
board of directors of the Saratoga County
Chamber of Commerce.
This presentation” will feature a panel of
experts who will be asked to publicly address
• The schedule and how New York state is likely to evaluate casino operator proposals.
• How the law’s requirements for partnerships between the casinos and local entertainment facilities might be implemented and enforced.
• The economic impact of casinos in a community like Saratoga Springs in terms of jobs, increased payroll, construction activities, purchasing from local vendors, etc.
• The impact the siting of a casino in Saratoga Springs may have on crime, poverty, and problem gambling in Saratoga County.
• How a casino in Saratoga Springs might impact the economic well-being of the downtown and the continued success of locally owned restaurant and retail stores.
• How a casino in Saratoga Springs might impact thoroughbred and harness horse racing.
• what would happen to the current Saratoga Casino and Raceway if they don’t obtain a license and a competitor opens a full gaming casino elsewhere in the Capital Region.
• How much money will be paid to the city and Saratoga County if a casino is sited in Saratoga Springs versus somewhere else in the Capital Region or the state.
The Chamber and Convention Bureau have setup an online survey that local residents and businesses can take in advance of this event to help guide the topics to be covered by the presenters. The survey can be accessed at www.saratoga.org and www.discoversaratoga.org as well as on their respective Facebook pages.
The results of the survey will be provided to all of the panelists before the forum. Jones opened his law practice in Saratoga Springs in 1980. He is a 1972 graduate of the Saratoga Springs High School and a 1976 graduate of the University of Vermont. He graduated from the University of Houston School of Law in 1978. He was the president of the Saratoga Springs Board of Education from 1990-1991; president of the Saratoga County YMCA from 1998-2000; and was a charter member and vice chairman of the Saratoga Springs City Center Authority.
“Matt Jones has this community’s best interest at heart,” said Todd Shimkus, president of the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce. “we’re thrilled he has agreed to moderate this important public forum in a way that will help all of us who love Saratoga Springs to better understand this complex issue.”
“We’re asking a diverse group of experts to present the facts as best they can on the opportunities and challenges we must consider as New York State moves forward to site full gaming casinos in our state and region,” said Todd Garofano, president of the Saratoga Convention and Tourism Bureau. “Our goal here is to share as much information as we can to ensure everyone is making an informed decision.”
The Chamber and the Convention Bureau are working to fi nalize the list of expert panelists. The Saratoga Casino and Raceway as well as local business owners are expected to participate.