As Alabama Gaming Fight Goes On, Operator Eyes New York
Gaming operators in the state of Alabama have been in a constant battle with lawmakers over the legality of electronic gaming machines. The Attorney general has made it clear that he believes the machines are illegal, while gaming hall owners maintain that their operations are within the law.
While the debate has again heated up in Alabama, one operator is setting their sights on a much bigger market, New York. Greenetrack, which operates a casino in Greene County, stated this week that they would like to open a casino in the Catskills.
"We expect that our bid will be seriously considered should we choose to apply for the gaming license." said Greenetrack, in a statement to The Post. "Accordingly, Greenetrack is building a team to explore this possibility as well as to handle community outreach across the state and to educate New Yorkers on Greenetrack's accomplished casino gaming operation."
Greenetrack was one of several Alabama locations that was raided by law enforcement officials back in 2011. Nearly 400 machines were seized during the operation, with the Attorney general citing Alabama law prohibiting slot machines as a reason for the raids.
Several of the gaming establishments, including Greenetrack, re-opened after the raids. The owners of Greenetrack claim that Green County voters approved the electronic gaming machines back in 2003. The Supreme Court has made a couple of individual case rulings on the machines, but nothing that would give a definitive answer as to whether or not the machines are legal under state law.
The Alabama gaming industry made national headlines when Milton McGregor and Ronnie Gilley, developers of VictoryLand and Country Crossings casinos, respectively, were arrested on charges of bribing state Senators. Gilley pleaded guilty, while McGregor beat his case in court. Over a dozen lobbyists and senators were also charged in the case.
It has been reported that Greenetrack has ties to the Reverend Al Sharpton, but Sharpton has denied having any knowledge of Greenetrack's desire to open a casino in the Catskills.