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Harrah’s New Orleans Blames Cigarette Ban for Declining Profits, Pennsylvania Casinos Set Record

Harrah’s New Orleans Blames Cigarette Ban for Declining Profits, Pennsylvania Casinos Set Record

Harrah’s New Orleans says the cigarette ban imposed by the town a year ago this week has negatively impacted its gambling revenues and requirements to be held accountable for the casino’s volitile manner.

Harrah’s New Orleans say the citywide smoking ban is shuffling up revenues in the incorrect direction.

Statistics supplied by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board seem to back up those claims. Gross gambling revenue at Harrah’s brand New Orleans totaled $23.9 million in March, down nearly 21 percent through the $30.2 million the casino produced in the month that is same 2015.

Since 2007, all Louisiana workplaces and restaurants have now been smoke-free, but the statutory law did not apply to casinos and bars. Carrying out a New that is unanimous Orleans Council vote and Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s (D) signature, a city ordinance went into impact on April 22, 2015, that banned tobacco cigarette smoking and vaping on the casino floor.

‘ Slot revenue, Harrah’s largest source of revenue, is impacted the most with slot income down 17 percent in the time following a ordinance’s impact compared to prior year,’ Harrah’s spokeswoman Jade Brown-Russell reported. ‘In the 12 months impacted by the smoking ban, Harrah’s has experienced video gaming revenue declines in 10 of the 12 months.’

Clash of the Ash

Supporters of the clean air ordinance say Harrah’s is simply searching for a scapegoat to put blame.

‘That’s been a trend on the couple that is last of,’ Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living Associate Director Tonia Moore stated of the financials. ‘I know a lot of people want in order to connect that because of the ordinance that is smoke-free but unfortunately we still cannot connect that to being the sole purpose for his or her revenues declining.’

Beneath the legislation, gamblers must leave a slot machine game or dining table game to smoke cigarettes a cigarette in a designated area.

Moore’s place is also with merit, as Boomtown New Orleans, located south of the populous town in Jefferson Parish and outside of the smoking cigarettes ban, also saw its revenues go south. Year-over-year, Boomtown reported an earnings decline of 2.3 percent.

Pennsylvania Sets Record

Smoking in Pennsylvania’s 12 land-based casinos continues to be permitted, though in certain smoker-friendly video gaming areas. Rather of a ban that is outright Keystone State lawmakers and local government officials opted to allocate up to 50 percent regarding the casino flooring to smokers, though all dining areas are 100 percent smoke-free as a result of the Pennsylvania Clean Indoor Air Act.

The compromise generally seems to be working.

In March, Pennsylvania video gaming facilities reported a month that is record dining table revenues as the gambling enterprises raked in $77.9 million. That figure is the most ever in the state’s six-year history blackjack that is permitting roulette, poker, as well as other tables.

Sheldon Adelson’s Sands Bethlehem again led the real method by posting $19.6 million in dining table receipts.

Slots also claimed higher profits in March, with the casinos posting a combined $211.2 million from the devices. In total, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board said gaming rose 4.2 percent during the month that is 31-day.

Considering gambling enterprises pay an effective taxation price of 55 percent on slots and 14 percent on table games, one associated with the highest tariffs of any state with legalized gambling, Harrisburg politicians are surely welcoming the increased income because they continue in an attempt to find new ways to fund swelling expenditures.

Bangladeshi Police Hunting 20 People in Fed Bank Heist

Kim Wong, whom is facing money laundering charges in the Philippines, has now returned $9.8 million regarding the money taken from the Fed Bank. (Image: conceptnews.central.com)

Bangladeshi police have actually identified 20 individuals they believe of having involvement in the $101 million Federal Reserve Bank of New York heist. The list comprises eight Filipinos and 12 Sri Lankans.

On February 5 hackers flooded the Fed Bank with requests for transfers totaling almost $1 billion from a free account owned by the Bangladeshi federal government. The hackers posed as officials of the Bangladesh Central Bank, having introduced spyware to the Bangladesh bank’s server, which allowed them to process and authorize the transactions

Some $20 million associated with the $101 million effectively withdrawn was traced to Sri Lanka and has since been restored, as the remaining $81 million was utilized in Philippine bank RCBC, and from there made its way via a remittance firm to the gently regulated casino industry that is philippine. Much of this remains unrecovered.

Concrete Proof

The lead police investigator into the situation, Shah Alam, said he desires to trace ‘at least 20 people from multiple foreign countries’ in terms of the heist.

‘we have discovered evidence that is concrete these folks were involved in the heist,’ he stated Monday. ‘we cannot disclose their identity at the brief moment as it can certainly hamper our investigation.’

Alam said no evidence had been found by them that employees of the Bangladesh Central Bank were involved in installing the malware on its computers. However, he said that police were investigating whether a service that is third-party to the bank was negligent in building adequate cyber-security systems.

Investigators would look for the assistance of Interpol in apprehending the individuals, said Alam, adding that he had passed the findings regarding the investigation to the Philippine government.

Wong Makes Right

Meanwhile, Kim Wong, a Chinese nationwide surviving in the Philippines whom had been initially identified by Philippine politicians as the ‘mastermind’ and ‘missing link’ into the heist, has returned an additional $4.34 million of the stolen funds, together with the $5.5 million he relinquished final thirty days.

Wong, who is the manager of the Eastern Hawaii Casino into the Cagayan Economic zone into the Philippines, has freely attended government hearings within the national nation so as to explain how $21 million of the stolen cash eventually ended up in various accounts he controlled.

He claims the money was brought into the Philippines by two casino that is high-rolling agents named Gao Shuhua and Ding Zhize. These men owed him $10 million in gambling debts, he stated, which he was paid by them whilst the sleep ended up being converted into chips for VIP gamblers.

Whenever asked why he previouslyn’t enquired concerning the supply of the money, he said, ‘You don’t ask, it is disrespectful.’

It is not known whether Wong or his two friends that are high-rolling among the 20 sought by Bangladesh.

Connecticut DFS Legislation Could Endanger Tribal Rev Sharing Compacts, Says AG

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen, who warned there is a ‘high degree of uncertainty’ surrounding the notion that DFS contests are not gambling. (Image: stamfordadvocate.com)

Connecticut’s plans to pass through legislation authorizing fantasy that is daily hit a snag this week when lawyer general George Jepsen warned that the proposal may maintain violation of this state’s revenue-sharing compact with its tribal operators.

At problem is the 8.75 percent surcharge on total entry charges that Connecticut’s DFS bill wants to charge sites like DraftKings and FanDuel for the privilege of offering contests to mention residents.

Additionally at issue may be the question of whether or not daily fantasy recreations constitutes gambling. Supporters regarding the bill say it doesn’t; that the contests are really a game of skill, and for that reason exempt from Connecticut’s criminal gambling laws.

Area for Doubt on DFS

But as Jepsen emphasized this week, there was a great amount of room for question on this point. He additionally noted that if DFS games are indeed games of skill, there is no need to pass a bill to exempt them.

Connecticut’s tribal operators, the Mohegans plus the Mashantucket Pequots, which run Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods respectively, are the only entities allowed to provide commercial gambling in their state beyond the pari-mutuel wagering available at racetracks.

Connecticut has permitted the two casinos on tribal lands that are sovereign the early nineties in return for a 25 percent cut of the profits.

However the tribes tend to strongly object towards the state sanctioning operations that might be construed as gambling, especially when these operations are paying a smaller cut, they offered any official opinion on the DFS legislation although it should be noted that tribal officials have not testified at tribal hearings, nor have.

Legislation Unlikely to pass through This Year

‘There presently exists a high degree of uncertainty about whether daily fantasy sports contests constitute games of skill or games of chance,’ wrote Jepsen.

‘ No one can anticipate with any level of certainty how a court, if confronted with these problems, would rule. With that uncertainty comes the danger that legislation of the type proposed could place in danger the state’s revenue-sharing arrangements utilizing the Tribes.’

The General Assembly’s Finance Revenue and Bonding Committee, which recently passed an income tax plan that factored in the DFS surcharge, had hoped that the scheme would create $9.5 million as part of a strategy to plug a $922 million deficit in the continuing state budget. However in the light of this AG’s comments this week, lawmakers are conceding that this will be now unlikely to occur.

‘Due towards the risk and uncertainty that would result from a potential legal challenge, the possibility of passing legislation this session is unlikely,’ Senate President Martin Looney, (D-New Haven).

MGM Springfield Uproots Historic Church While Massachusetts Lawmakers Advise Against Southeast Commercial Casino

The MGM Springfield has effectively relocated the 129-year-old First that is historic Spiritualist in Springfield, Massachusetts, to make way for its $950 million casino resort scheduled to open in 2018.

200 yards and five-and-a-half lucky 88 pokie machine download hours later, land previously occupied by this historic church is now clear for the MGM Springfield. (Image: Dina Rudick/Boston Globe)

The church was moved on Tuesday some 200 yards from where it stood since 1887 after weeks of preparation. The trip took five-and-a-half hours, or a blistering 1.8 feet each minute.

Of course, speed was of small concern as conservation regarding the eminent building and assurance of its integrity had been vital for the going team. When all was said and done, the 200-yard voyage cost MGM $800,000.

‘Today’s church relocation marks an exciting milestone for this task,’ MGM Springfield VP of Construction and Development Brian Packer told reporters.

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno (D) put a fun twist on his remarks by stating, ‘we think if you look at the meaning now of ‘Holy Roller,’ that might fit the bill.’

Maintaining History

One of many primary concerns among local residents with building the MGM Springfield in the location developers and MGM professionals preferred was how the mega-resort might impact the area’s historical structures.

MGM committed to both the Springfield Historical Commission and Massachusetts Historical Commission it would simply take every step possible to assure the region that it mightn’t be bulldozing its method through the city. Rather, MGM claims its objective is preserve the history that is rich of.

‘Once visitors pull the highway off and into our strategically located parking garages, those who want to experience the many historic, cultural, company, and academic draws that Springfield provides, will be associated with Union facility and other central places by way of a trolley system,’ the MGM Springfield internet site explains.

Lawmakers Warn Gaming Commission

The Massachusetts Expanded Gaming Act passed in 2011 called for the issuance of licenses for three commercial resort gambling facilities in three split regions.

The Wynn Everett, now referred to as Wynn Boston Harbor, and MGM Springfield claimed the first couple of spots representing the central and sections that are western. But Region C, the part that is southeast of state comprising Bristol, Plymouth, Nantucket, Dukes, and Barnstable counties remains up for grabs.

The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe is presently constructing a $1 billion casino on its native land in Taunton. The tribe, which does not need state approval to create this kind of facility on its own reservation, would pay a 17 per cent tax on its gambling revenues unless Massachusetts violates the gaming lightweight and allows a casino that is commercial be built within 25 kilometers of Taunton.

Rush Street Gaming has proposed a $677 million gambling resort in Brockton and ended up being anticipated to get approval by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) when the governing body matches week that is next talk about area C.

Seven state lawmakers are advising the MGC to vote contrary to the Brockton resort as the Mashpee would be allowed by it Wampanoag Tribe to operate a casino tax-free.

‘ We now have serious concerns that total revenue collection by the Commonwealth is not being given the consideration it deserves,’ the coalition wrote in a letter to the MGC this week.