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Niagara Falls calls for more gaming investments
The city of Niagara Falls has put out the welcome mat for investment by the world's gaming sector, unanimously passing a City Council resolution asking Premier Kathleen Wynne and her Finance Minister to allow new gaming sites in the city and to direct Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corporation (OLG) to include the city's two existing resort casinos in its modernization program.
"Niagara Falls is the premier gaming destination in Canada and a global brand that attracts millions of international tourists," said Mayor Jim Diodati. "It is the logical place in Ontario to expand the gaming sector and attract more tourism, jobs, investment, and spending.
The Council asked OLG to issue a Request for Proposal for the operation of the Niagara casinos under the new modernization model in this fiscal year.
"The gaming industry is highly competitive," said Mayor Diodati. "Without modernization at Fallsview Casino and Casino Niagara we're at risk of losing revenue to other operations in the province and in New York State."
In March of 2012, the OLG outlined a proposal to modernize lottery and gaming in Ontario. The plan focuses on improving customer focus, securing qualified service providers for the day-to-day operation of lottery and gaming, and renewing OLG's role in the management and oversight of lottery and gaming. But neither Fallsview Casino nor Casino Niagara were included in the OLG modernization program.
City Council Resolution 35, approved by the full Council August 13, 2013, states: "Niagara Falls City Council believes the best way to ensure Niagara's two casinos retain their role as significant local/regional employers and restore their traditional role as generators of provincial revenue and tourism attractors is through the introduction of product diversification, new investment, such as a new 7000 seat theatre, and distinct and relevant branding differentiating Niagara's two resort casinos."
But the Council also went further, sending a message to Premier Wynne that, "Niagara should be the Province's premier resort casino destination, with a goal of permitting additional resort casinos to be established in Niagara Falls."
"Our Council has always been supportive of the gaming in Niagara Falls, and our doors are always open to expanding and strengthening our Casino industry," added Mayor Diodati.
Source: City of Niagara Falls press release