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Howard Stutz – Penn National Gaming gains preliminary approval to buy Tropicana

Howard Stutz – Penn National Gaming gains preliminary approval to buy Tropicana
Howard Stutz – Penn National Gaming gains preliminary approval to buy TropicanaNevada gaming regulators granted preliminary approval Wednesday for Penn National Gaming to acquire the Tropicana Las Vegas for $360 million.The Gaming Control Board had few concerns about the transaction, which was announced in April by the Wyomissing, Pa.-based regional casino giant.”This is good for the state and Strip,” said Control Board Chairman A.G. Burnett at the hearing in Carson City.The Nevada Gaming Commission will rule on the transaction on Aug. 20.Penn National COO Jay Snowden told the Control Board the Tropicana fills a void by giving the company a resort on the Strip.Penn operates 26 casinos nationwide and has a 3 million-member customer database. Snowden in a previous appearance before the Control Board said 25% of the company’s customers regularly visit Las Vegas. Penn National has owned the M Resort in Henderson since 2011.Penn attracts some of that business to the 390-room hotel-casino, but the M is about 10 miles from the heart of the Strip.The 1,500-room Tropicana, a Rat Pack-era Strip resort, will not be rebranded as one of the company’s Hollywood casinos.Snowden said Penn will spend $20 million on the property after closing the deal to integrate the company’s player database into the Tropicana.”We believe we can improve the gaming experience on the floor,” Snowden said. “Once the database has been updated, we can invite our players to visit the Tropicana.”Snowden said the Tropicana produced $100 million in total annual revenue, $40 million of which came from the casino. Snowden said Penn would upgrade the slot machine offerings.He told the Control Board the company plans to “learn from the customers” the next steps needed for the Tropicana. He said the company could spend $200 million in the next four years to upgrade the resort.Penn National General Counsel Carl Sottosanti said the transaction has been approved by six other states that needed to sign off on the financing.Last month, Penn named Bob Sheldon as president of the company’s Las Vegas properties. He was general manager of Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway, which he helped open in February 2012.Sheldon began his gaming career in Las Vegas at the Las Vegas Hilton and with Mirage Resorts, including serving as president of the Golden Nugget Las Vegas. He also oversaw Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut.Penn National is also spending $390 million to build a Hollywood-branded Indian casino near San Diego.Copyright GamingWire. All rights reserved.

Richard N. Velotta – Attorney Joe Brown resigns from Nevada Gaming Commission

Richard N. Velotta – Attorney Joe Brown resigns from Nevada Gaming Commission
Richard N. Velotta – Attorney Joe Brown resigns from Nevada Gaming Commission Las Vegas attorney Joe Brown, known as much for his gentlemanly demeanor as his status as one of Southern Nevada’s premier lawyers, resigned from the five-member Nevada Gaming Commission on Thursday for personal reasons.A member of the Gaming Commission since 2008, Brown served the commission when it considered the licensing of MGM Resorts International’s CityCenter project, the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas, the SLS Las Vegas and during Station Casinos’ and Caesars Entertainment’s bankruptcy protection cases.He said he’s leaving to address additional professional obligations with his Fennemore Craig Jones Vargas law firm and to send more time with his family.Gov. Brian Sandoval is expected to accept the resignation Friday and begin the process of appointing a replacement.“My decision to resign from the Nevada Gaming Commission was not made without some amount of regret,” Brown told fellow commissioners at the end of Thursday’s meeting. “It has been my honor to serve on many state, federal, charitable and professional boards and commissions throughout my career, but none more important than my work with the commission.”Brown said he would continue to practice in the areas of government affairs, administrative and business law.Brown announced his plans at the end of Thursday’s monthly commission meeting.His four board colleagues and Gaming Control Board Chairman A.G. Burnett showered him with congratulatory remarks and stories reflecting Brown’s gentle personality.“I have had the privilege of serving with Joe Brown, first on the Nevada State Athletic Commission and now on the Nevada Gaming Commission,” said Tony Alamo, who chairs the commission and joined the board the same year as Brown.“Having worked with Joe for more than a decade, I have seen what a huge asset he has been to the state of Nevada,” Alamo said. “His hard work and dedication have obviously been noted in everything that we have accomplished. I will miss Joe and I know he will move on to bigger and better things.”Board member John Moran Jr., also an attorney, recollected how he and Brown have known each other for more than 40 years and that even in an adversarial profession, he always knew Brown to be “professional and a gentleman.”“One of the joys of working on this commission is working with him,” added Commissioner Pat Mulroy. “I wish I could get you to recant your decision,” she said to him.Commissioner Randolph Townsend applauded Brown’s dedication to military veterans. In addition to serving on the Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance — formerly the Nevada Development Authority, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, the Nature Conservancy and the Desert Research Institute, Brown has worked with the Nellis Air Force Base Support Team and the Nevada Military Support Alliance.“Your commitment to our military personnel and our veterans has been exemplary,” Townsend said. “You’ve never wavered in your commitment to those who have served their country.”Copyright GamingWire. All rights reserved.

Craps, Roulette approved for Colorado

Craps, Roulette approved for Colorado

Craps, Roulette approved for Colorado
Colorado overwhelmingly approved a measure this week that lets casinos in the town of Black Hawk raise their maximum bets from $5 to $100. Voters approved the measure in a 54 to 6 victory at the polls.The measure also approves all the new provisions included in Amendment 50, which was passed statewide on Nov. 4. It means casinos can also add roulette and craps, and stay open 24 hours a day.Black Hawk is the second of Colorado’s gambling communities to vote on the issue. Cripple Creek had already voted to approve the new betting limits and games. Central City votes on Jan. 20.A portion of the new tax revenue generated from the higher limits, new games and longer hours is earmarked for state universities and colleges. Experts think the new games could raise as much as $300 million if all three towns adopt the new rules.The new rules will go into effect this summer.Black Hawk and its casinos trust that higher stakes will make them more competitive with other gambling destinations and boost revenue, but the new rules probably wouldn’t take effect until early July, and the prospect of increased activity is already alleviating the economic concerns of the present.Last year was rough, but conditions are expected to grow. Black Hawk now expects its total revenue to be $28 million this year.According to City Manager Richard Lessner, casino gaming revenues help finance jobs are in finance, police, fire, planning and public works.The casinos have cited a desire to grow revenues, an new smoking ban and fierce competition as reasons for the expansion right now. Gamblers do travel from out of town to the former mining community these days.Cripple Creek already has approved similar changes, and Central City is next, experts said. © Copyright 2009 Online Casino Crawler This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.