MGM secures Empire City purchase approval

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MGM Resorts has been granted permission to purchase the Empire City Casino and Yonkers Raceway for $850m by the New York State Gaming Commission.

The submission, which was granted without discussion by the NYSGC board, follows a January delay by the commission citing “issues with a quorum of members” now resolved to allow MGM full purchase of the video-lottery parlour and harness track.
“We appreciate the work of the New York Gaming Commission and the approval of our license,” said a statement from MGM Resorts.
“We couldn’t be more excited to become part of the Yonkers community and welcome Empire City’s 1,200 team members to the MGM Resorts family. MGM is looking forward to bringing another world-class entertainment destination to the Northeast.”
The purchase was first announced in May 2018, and will see MGM Resorts acquire the casino from the present owners the Rooney family, before selling it to the MGM Growth Properties trust for $625m, to then be leased by MGM Resorts for $50m annually.
The racino currently hosts 5,300 machines, and will likely be the site of proposed hotel and casino development by the firm, however, an application for table game operation at the site will have to wait until the 2023 expiry of a statewide moratorium on new gaming licenses.
The 120 year old racetrack is located just 15 miles from Times Square, and was praised by MGM Resorts president Bill Hornbuckle in December for its “world-class integrated gaming, racing and dining experience.”


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