Sunday, October 25, 2009

Pushed by neighboring states, NH catches gaming fever

Mass. gambling push may force N.H.'s hand - Fosters

Voters in November 2008 defeated a previous proposal to create a casino in Oxford County as well as an attempt by the Penobscot and Passamaquoddy Indian tribes to create a $650 million casino in Sanford, Maine, in 2003.

But Maine voters did approve a racino, which led to Bangor's Hollywood Slots complex.

Rich Killion, a spokesman for Fix It Now NH, a coalition of pro-gambling groups, said New Hampshire would be wise to approve casino gambling before other nearby states because it would give Granite State businesses "a leg up."

There are 1.25 million potential customers within 25 miles of Rockingham Park in Salem and another 1.3 million just beyond that radius in the Greater Boston area, he said.

"New Hampshire not doing it would allow them to get all the revenue," Killion said of Massachusetts.