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July 2nd, 2014

Saratoga Casino And Raceway Files Application

Saratoga Casino and Raceway announced that it has signed a partnership agreement with the principals of Rush Street Gaming to own and operate the Hudson Valley Casino & Resort in Newburgh, New York. Affiliates of Rush Street Gaming own and operate three market-leading casinos in the United States in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and Des Plaines, Ill., just outside of Chicago, as well as one on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. The two entities filed their application to the New York State Gaming Commission today for one of four licenses that will be issued for a casino in New York.

Rush’s decision to partner with Saratoga for the Hudson Valley Casino & Resort comes as momentum to establish a casino in Newburgh is reaching a fevered pitch. The project has received support from, or entered memorandums of understanding with, a who’s who of regional leaders, organizations, businesses, and communities in the Hudson Valley, including: the Town and City of Newburgh, City of Newburgh Mayor, Judy Kennedy, the City of Beacon, the City of Middletown, the Orange County Vegetable Growers, Habitat for Humanity-Newburgh, The Mid-Hudson Civic Center, State Senator Terry Gipson, State Assemblyman Frank Skartados, the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce, Dutchess County Executive, Marc Molinaro, the Marlboro, Valley Central and Wallkill School Districts, the Sugar Loaf, Paramount, and Shadowlands performing arts centers,  as well as 9 local brewers and wineries who make up the backbone of the HudsonValley’s food and beverage industry. The Saratoga-Rush partnership brings together two operators with major gaming enterprises in six states and two countries.

In each city in which it operates, Rush Street Gaming’s casinos are recognized as a proud community partner, a strong economic engine and a great place to work.  For instance, Rush Street’s facilities annually volunteer more than 2,000 staff hours and contribute millions of dollars to scholarships, sidewalk repair, medical research and more. Rush Street casinos also have established and funded neighborhood economic development groups to spark local revitalization. 

Such efforts have earned local and national accolades throughout the Rush Street Gaming portfolio:  The Chicago Reader named Rivers Casino in Des Plaines “The Best Casino in Chicago.” Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh has been named the “Best Overall Gaming Resort” in the state four years running by Casino Player Magazine. SugarHouse Casino was named “Best Places to Work” for three consecutive years by the Philadelphia Business Journal. And Fallsview Casino Resort has been voted “Ontario’s Favorite Casino” for six years running in the Toronto Sun Readers Choice Awards.

"This partnership brings together gaming experiences developed in six states with the financial strength necessary to develop a destination resort at the crossroads of the Hudson Valley off I-84 and the New York State Thruway in the Town of Newburgh,” said James Featherstonhaugh, owner of Saratoga Casino and Raceway. “This partnership will have an economic impact on cities from Poughkeepsie to Beacon, from Newburgh to Middletown and beyond, creating jobs in some of the most economically challenged communities in the region, all the while highlighting the best the region has to offer through strategic partnerships with local food, beverage, and agriculture assets.”

“We are pleased to join Saratoga in developing a world-class casino for Newburgh,” said Greg Carlin, Rush Street Gaming CEO.  “Rush Street has a proven track record for integrating urban casino design, delivering superior customer experiences and providing thousands of high-quality jobs.  Our history of community collaboration will ensure that the City of Newburgh, its residents, the surrounding communities and the state of New York will realize this great opportunity.”

At the heart of the Hudson Valley Casino & Resort, is a business and branding plan that will incorporate iconic elements of the region into the project, working with local restaurants, farmers, craft brewers and distilleries to feature their local wines, spirits and produce throughout the resort. Just minutes away from area are attractions like the Walkway Over the Hudson, West Point, the Culinary Institute of America, historic Hyde Park, Dia Beacon, and the region’s many hiking and biking opportunities. The project will act as a growth engine for the area’s burgeoning tourism industry and revitalize the local economy on both sides of the Hudson River.

Additionally, the project is estimated to provide roughly $10 million a year to the Newburgh Enlarged City School District through property taxes, an additional $8 million in revenue sharing with the Town of Newburgh and Orange County, and a total of over $2.5 million annually to the City of Newburgh.

Sited at the intersection of I-84 and the New York State Thruway, the location presents direct access to existing gaming markets in both Pennsylvania and Connecticut and is north of Route 17. The project’s location presents opportunities on both sides of the Hudson River and will complement –not compete –with any potential casino in the Catskills. The casino and resort’s location is unrivaled among casino proposals.

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