International edition
June 24, 2021

Including an upfront licensing fee of us$ 300 million

Aqueduct group agrees to pay higher licensing fee

(US).- The business consortium chosen to build and operate video lottery terminals at Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens has accepted conditions that state officials are requiring, Governor David Paterson said last week.


hey include an upfront licensing fee of us$ 300 million. Aqueduct Entertainment Group had previously said it would pay a us$ 200 million upfront fee. Paterson said Friday he and legislative leaders selected the consortium from five bidders. Paterson, speaking to reporters Wednesday, said the conditions were relayed to AEG. "And they agreed to the terms," he commented.

AEG partners include Navegante Group, led by former MGM casino executive Larry Woolf; Greenstar Services Corp.; Turner Construction Co.; Levine Builders; the Darman Group Inc. and Empowerment Development Corp.; PS&S Design; Siemens and merchant bank Clairvest Group.

A call to Woolf was not immediately returned Wednesday. He told the Las Vegas Review-Journal in Tuesday's editions that the next step is negotiating a memorandum of understanding with New York lottery authorities, and the payment structure of an upfront franchise fee of us$ 300 million will be part of the negotiations. He said he expected talks to last two months, with the casino opening about six months after that.

In a letter to Paterson, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said the conditions are not negotiable. It has been eight years since lawmakers approved a plan to install as many as 4,500 such gambling machines at the thoroughbred track, with a percentage of revenues paid to the state.

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