Over $1bn annual tax contribution

Expanded Resorts World Casino license would skyrocket NY state tax revenues, says Genting

Reading time 1:38 min

Genting Malaysia Bhd, the owner of Resorts World casino in New York City, said that an expansion of its gambling offering would lift its tax payments to the state by $1 billion annually. This would mark an increase from the $600 million in taxes paid by the resort last year.

Plans for a major expansion of the Queens property's amenities and offerings were unveiled as the company works to secure one of the three highly sought-after casino licenses being considered for the New York City area.

According to a spokesperson for Genting, the company is committed to maintaining its current tax structure, which entails contributing about 67% of its slot machine revenue to the state, inclusive of administrative fees and other expenses. While the share for table games like blackjack may be lower, Genting anticipates that the overall annual tax contributions will surpass the $1 billion mark.

In addition to allowing the casino to expand its offerings, including blackjack, roulette and other table games, an expanded license could allow the casino to stay open 24 hours and offer credit to bettors, the company said, as reported by Bloomberg.

The timeline for the issuance of the licenses, however, may face delays, as highlighted recently by the executive director of New York’s Gaming Commission. Factors such as environmental approvals and local considerations could push the decision to as late as 2025, contrary to initial expectations of a decision this year. Nevertheless, industry experts speculate that legislative interventions could potentially expedite the process.

A diverse range of potential bidders is vying for the highly coveted licenses, including industry giants like Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Wynn Resorts Ltd., as well as financier Steve Cohen, who has partnered with Hard Rock International. However, Genting and MGM Resorts International, operator of the Empire City Casino in Yonkers, stand out as strong contenders due to their existing casino operations in the region.

Winners of the licenses will be required to pay a one-time fee of $500 million to the state, as mandated by New York's casino law. Bidders are expected to compete based on various factors, including the magnitude of their tax contributions and the scale of their projects.

New York imposes some of the highest casino taxes in the nation, with an effective rate of 55% on electronic devices, as reported by the American Gaming Association trade group. In contrast, casinos in Nevada, where Genting operates a Las Vegas resort, are subject to a significantly lower tax rate of 6.8%.

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