New Castle News

Hot Topics

July 3, 2012

Penn National files for license, move

NEW CASTLE — Penn National Gaming is getting closer to video slot machine operations at its Ohio racetracks.

The Pennsylvania-based company formally filed with the Ohio Lottery Commission to obtain video lottery terminal sales agent licenses for its racetracks. Also Saturday, it filed with the Ohio Racing Commission for authorization to relocate tracks from Columbus and Toledo to Austintown and Dayton.

“These are the licenses to operate the slots,” Penn National Ohio spokesman Bob Tenenbaum said.

Since the dismissal of a lawsuit by The Ohio Roundtable, he said, all seven existing racetracks in Ohio may apply for slots at their locations.

The suit raised constitutional challenges, claiming Ohio Gov. John Kasich and legislators ignored the voters’ wishes when the governor signed an executive order establishing rules by which the lottery commission may place terminals.

The Roundtable has filed notice it plans to appeal, but has not yet done so, Tenenbaum said.

Penn National is hopeful Ohio regulators will act quickly on the requests, he added, so groundbreaking can take place in the fall.

Tenenbaum said he does not know what timeline is in place, adding the Ohio Racing Commission meets July 19, but doesn’t know if Penn National is on the agenda.

If approved, the Austintown and Dayton facilities will be Penn National’s third and fourth in Ohio. Its $320 million Hollywood Casino Toledo opened May 29, and construction is near completion on a $400 million Hollywood Casino in Columbus. A fall opening is being planned. The racetracks are being relocated so not to compete with the casinos in Toledo and Columbus.

Earlier this year, Penn National announced plans to relocate a thoroughbred racetrack from Columbus to Austintown and a harness track from Toledo to Dayton — providing Ohio officials allow video lottery machines at the new locations. Plans call for 1,500 per facility.

In a statement issued Monday, Tim Wilmott, Penn National president and chief operations officer, said the weekend filings are “another major step forward for these two significant economic development projects.”

Under terms of a memorandum of understanding with the office of the governor, Penn National will pay a $75 million relocation fee for each track and another $50 million video lottery terminal license fee per track. These fees will be paid “over time,” according to Penn National’s statement.

The company anticipates investing $125 million to construct the facilities, which it said will feature bars and restaurants, generate 1,000 construction jobs and provide 1,000 direct and indirect jobs.

Beulah Park in Columbus will continue to operate until the anticipated opening date of the Austintown facility in 2014.

To be called Hollywood Slots and Mahoning Valley Race Course, it will be on 184 acres in the Centerpointe Business Park near the intersection of Interstate 80 and Ohio 46.

Penn National owns or operates 27 gaming and racing facilities in 18 states and Canada.

(Email: nlowry@ncnewsonline.com)

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Hot Topics
  • Bobosky.jpg Gas holdouts unconvinced of safety

    When Suzanne Matteo and her husband, Martin, bought their house on four acres in Pulaski Township they had a plan. They would grow a huge vegetable garden, raise lots of flowers and a few chickens and enjoy the fresh air and quiet.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • gavel.jpg Anti fracking group waits for answer to its letter

    More than 20 state environmental groups are asking that March 25 and 26 hearings on proposed “forced pooling” be postponed. They say more time is necessary to allow members of the public to voice their opinions.
     

    March 18, 2014 1 Photo 2 Stories

  • Hilcorp_Energy.jpg Hilcorp seeks to force drilling on reluctant landowners

    A hearing has been set on a request to force local landowners to allow gas and oil drilling. Hilcorp Corp., a Texas firm with multiple well pads in the area, is asking for the so-called “forced pooling.”

    March 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • brown.jpg Boy’s murder case goes to Pennsylvania high court

    The Pennsylvania Supreme Court must decide if a Pennsylvania teen should get a new trial in the death of his father’s pregnant fiancée, who was fatally shot with a youth-model shotgun when he was 11.

    March 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Casino.jpg Casino hearing date now official

    May 8 has been confirmed as the public hearing date for Lawrence Downs Casino and Racing Resort. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board will hear from those who wish to comment on the casino license under consideration for the racetrack/casino complex planned for Mahoning Township.

    March 12, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Agreement to enhance Austintown track project

    Penn National Gaming announced Monday it has signed a key agreement regarding its Austintown race track and casino. The thoroughbred racing track, part of a facility that will include slots-like gambling machines, is scheduled to open in the fall, and the new agreement with the Ohio Horsemen’s Benevolent and Protective Association is being touted as “positive progress” in meeting that deadline.

    March 11, 2014

  • Vogler.jpg Public hearing for casino could be in spring

    The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board could turn its focus to Lawrence Downs Casino and Racing Resort this spring. Lawrence County Commissioner Dan Vogler, who attended the board’s meeting in Harrisburg this week, said he and staff members informally discussed a timetable for the upcoming public hearing on the gaming application submitted by Endeka Entertainment.

    March 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • brown.jpg Our Opinion: After five years, Jordan Brown case continues — sadly for all

    It’s not unusual for newspapers to look back on major news events when key anniversaries come about. So it was that the New Castle News has been running articles on the fifth anniversary of the 2009 slaying of Kenzie Houk, and the subsequent arrest of Jordan Brown for the crime.

    February 25, 2014 1 Photo 9 Stories

  • Elisco.jpg Jordan Brown Case, Five Years Later: Defense attorney learns ‘to expect the unexpected’

    On the morning of Feb. 21, 2009, attorney Dennis Elisco met a boy who changed his life. Thursday marked the five-year anniversary in the case of 16-year-old Jordan Brown.

    February 24, 2014 1 Photo 8 Stories

  • Jordan Brown Case, Five Years Later: After half a decade, intrigue and questions remain

    Unusual aspects of Jordan Brown’s case drew national and international attention. Now 16, Jordan was 11 when he was charged as an adult with two counts of homicide in the fatal shooting of his father’s pregnant fiancée, Kenzie Marie Houk, 26.

    February 24, 2014

House Ads
Poll

What is your favorite Easter treat?

Jelly beans
Chocolate ... bunnies, crosses, anything that’s chocolate!
Marshmallow peeps
Decorated eggs
Other
     View Results