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 city a year ago this week has negatively impacted its gambling revenues and requirements become held accountable for the casino’s downward spiral.

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

Statistics provided 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 generated in the month that is same 2015.

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

‘ Slot revenue, Harrah’s largest source of revenue, has been affected the absolute most with slot income down 17 % in the time scale following the ordinance’s effect compared to prior year,’ Harrah’s spokeswoman Jade Brown-Russell stated. ‘In the 12 months impacted by the smoking ban, Harrah’s has experienced gaming income declines in 10 of the 12 months.’

Clash of the Ash

Supporters of the clean atmosphere ordinance say Harrah’s is simply looking for a scapegoat to place blame.

‘That’s been a trend throughout the last couple of years,’ Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free residing Associate Director Tonia Moore said of the financials. ‘I know a lot of people want for connecting that with all the smoke-free ordinance, but unfortunately we still cannot connect that to being the sole purpose due to their revenues declining.’

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

Moore’s position is also with merit, as Boomtown New Orleans, located south of this populous city in Jefferson Parish and not in the cigarette smoking 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 is still permitted, though in certain gaming that is smoker-friendly. Alternatively of a ban that is outright Keystone State lawmakers and local government officials opted to allocate up to 50 % of the casino floor to smokers, though all dining areas are 100 % smoke-free due to the Pennsylvania Clean Indoor Air Act.

The compromise seems to be working.

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

Sheldon Adelson’s Sands Bethlehem yet 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 casinos pay an effective taxation price of 55 percent on slots and 14 percent on dining table games, one associated with highest tariffs of any state with legalized gambling, Harrisburg politicians are undoubtedly welcoming the increased income because they continue to try and find new techniques to fund swelling expenditures.

Bangladeshi Police Hunting 20 People in Fed Bank Heist

Kim Wong, who is facing money laundering costs in the Philippines, has now returned $9.8 million for the money taken from the Fed Bank. (Image:

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

On 5 hackers flooded the Fed Bank with requests for transfers totaling almost $1 billion from an account owned by the Bangladeshi government february. The hackers posed as officials for 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 of this $101 million successfully withdrawn was traced to Sri Lanka and has since been restored, as the remaining $81 million was transferred to Philippine bank RCBC, and from there made its way using a remittance firm to the lightly regulated Philippine casino industry. Much of this remains unrecovered.

Concrete Proof

The lead authorities investigator in the instance, Shah Alam, said he desires to trace ‘at least 20 people from numerous foreign nations’ in terms of the heist.

‘We’ve discovered evidence that is concrete these people were associated with the heist,’ he said Monday. ‘we cannot disclose their identity at the brief minute as it can hamper our investigation.’

Alam said they had found no evidence that employees of the Bangladesh Central Bank were involved with installing the spyware on its personal computers. However, he said that police were investigating whether a third-party company to the bank was in fact negligent in building adequate cyber-security systems.

Investigators would seek the help of Interpol in apprehending the individuals, stated Alam, adding that he had passed the findings of the investigation towards the Philippine government.

Wong Makes Appropriate

Meanwhile, Kim Wong, a Chinese national located in the Philippines whom had been initially identified by Philippine politicians as being the ‘mastermind’ and ‘missing link’ in the heist, has returned an additional $4.34 million of the stolen funds, on top of the $5.5 million he relinquished last 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 country so as to explain how $21 million of the taken money eventually ended up in various accounts he controlled.

He claims the money was brought into the Philippines by two high-rolling casino junket agents named Gao Shuhua and Ding Zhize. These men owed him $10 million in gambling debts, he said, which they paid him while the remainder was converted into chips for VIP gamblers.

When asked why he previouslyn’t enquired about the source of the money, he said, ‘You don’t ask, it is disrespectful.’

It isn’t known whether Wong or his two high-rolling friends are among the 20 sought by Bangladesh.

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

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

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 associated with state’s revenue-sharing compact with its tribal operators.

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

Also at issue could be the concern of whether or not daily fantasy activities comprises gambling. Supporters of the bill say it willn’t; that the contests are a game of ability, therefore exempt from Connecticut’s criminal gambling laws and regulations.

Area for Doubt on DFS

But as Jepsen emphasized this week, there is lots of room for doubt 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 and also the Mashantucket Pequots, which run Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods respectively, are the only entities permitted to provide gambling that is commercial the state beyond the pari-mutuel wagering available at racetracks.

Connecticut has permitted the two gambling enterprises on tribal sovereign lands since the first nineties inturn for a 25 percent cut of the profits.

But the tribes tend to strongly object to the state sanctioning operations that would be construed as gambling, especially whenever these operations are paying an inferior 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 Present Year

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

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

The General Assembly’s Finance Revenue and Bonding Committee, which recently passed a tax plan that factored in the DFS surcharge, had hoped that the scheme would generate $9.5 million as component of a technique to plug a $922 million deficit in the continuing state budget. But in the light associated with the AG’s commentary this week, lawmakers are conceding that this will be now not likely to happen.

‘Due towards the risk and doubt that could 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 historic First Spiritualist Church in Springfield, Massachusetts, to produce means for its $950 million casino resort scheduled to open in 2018.

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

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

Of course, speed was of little concern as preservation for the eminent building and assurance of its integrity had been vital for the moving team. When all was stated and done, the voyage that is 200-yard MGM $800,000.

‘Today’s church relocation marks a milestone that is exciting this task,’ MGM Springfield VP of Construction and developing Brian Packer told reporters.

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

Maintaining History

One of the concerns that are primary regional 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 just take every step possible to assure the spot that it couldn’t be bulldozing its means through the town. Rather, MGM claims its goal is always to preserve the history that is rich of.

‘Once visitors pull the highway off and into our strategically located parking garages, those who wish to feel the many historic, cultural, company, and scholastic draws that Springfield is offering, will be linked to Union facility and other central locations with a trolley system,’ the MGM Springfield site explains.

Lawmakers Warn Gaming Commission

The Massachusetts Expanded Gaming Act passed last year called for the issuance of licenses for three resort that is commercial facilities in three separate areas.

The Wynn Everett, now referred to as Wynn Boston Harbor, and MGM Springfield claimed the first couple of spots representing the central and western sections. 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 currently constructing a $1 billion casino on its land that is native in. The tribe, which does not need state approval to build this type of facility on its own reservation, would pay a 17 per cent tax on its gambling profits unless Massachusetts violates the gaming compact and allows a casino that is commercial be built within 25 miles of Taunton.

Rush Street Gaming has proposed a $677 million gambling resort in Brockton and had been anticipated to get approval by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) when the governing body meets week that is next discuss Region 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 work a casino tax-free.

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