Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Golden Goose of New England

You know what it lays, right?

Where do you think they came up with the term "like s*** thru a goose?"

"Slots parlor hopes to cash in at new spot; Maine's $132m 'racino' set for grand opening" by Jerry Harkavy, Associated Press | June 29, 2008

BANGOR - The slots parlor that set up shop nearly three years ago in a converted restaurant will begin its move up the street to grander quarters this weekend as one of the state's largest development projects in recent years nears completion.

The price tag for Hollywood Slots Hotel & Raceway has ballooned from an initial estimate of $70 million to $132 million, a figure that includes the gambling facility, a 1,500-space parking garage, and a 154-room hotel.

"We just kept adding to it and adding to it," said Jon Johnson, general manager of the complex that will open to the public Tuesday. The "racino" will close early today for the move, which is to be completed in time for an invitation-only grand opening celebration tomorrow night.

The Art Deco-style complex covers 8 acres on a site that had housed a Holiday Inn and a motel. Built close to the street, it gives a downtown flavor and an economic development kick-start to an area dominated by Bass Park, the Bangor Civic Center, and the landmark statue of Paul Bunyan.

The new incarnation features a 250-seat restaurant that offers what is billed as the largest buffet in Maine, a separate snack bar, a gift shop, and a stage that will feature live entertainment Friday and Saturday nights and large-screen music and sports videos at other times. The complex will be equipped with 400 security cameras.

A goal is to attract players who would otherwise travel to Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun in Connecticut and Canadians looking to spend their strengthened currency at entertainment venues on this side of the border. With a higher profile, the new complex is also more likely to gain the attention of vacationers who pass through Bangor en route to Bar Harbor and the Maine coast.

You know, there is only so much money to go around: Foxwoods Education Funding Drys Up

The project has been a bonanza for Bangor, a city of 31,000 that is the commercial hub for vast areas of northern and eastern Maine. In addition to 300 temporary construction jobs, the complex will employ a permanent workforce of more than 500 and is expected to provide the city with roughly $3 million a year from slots revenue and $2 million more in property taxes.

Yup, we always here about the PROMISES!!

Honestly, I am really tired of having politicians blow smoke up our asses!

And what about the drawbacks?

The drugs, crime and corruption that come along with "gaming?"

City Manager Ed Barrett said the casino is helping to fuel a development boom that could include a waterfront park along the Penobscot River and the replacement of the aging Bangor Auditorium with a new arena and convention center.

Not everyone is as enthusiastic. Casinos No!, a statewide group that has battled casino development in Maine, said gambling doesn't draw new money into the economy and opens the door to such problems as crime and gambling addiction.

Oh, save the PARTY POOPERS for LATER, huh?

"People are dazzled by it all, the dollar signs, the activity, the initial construction jobs, and everything," said spokesman Dennis Bailey. "But studies show that most of the problems associated with casinos surface within three to five years after these things open. The jury's still out for people to say how good or bad it is."

Is that why Foxwoods is now struggling?

And what to do with these monstrosities after they've been built?

As an example, who wants a strip club on their street corner?