At a news conference this morning (Tuesday) in Saratoga Springs, a dozen employees of Saratoga Casino & Raceway and their families gathered at the Saratoga Springs Recreation Center and called on community support for proposed expansion of the existing casino in Saratoga.
In a release, the group “Destination Saratoga” said that gaming “is the most important issue currently facing the Saratoga community, and the 630 employees of Saratoga Casino & Raceway are speaking out to ensure their voices are heard.”
They are touting the positive impact that the Racino has played in the community including good-paying jobs with benefits and the other economic impact.
PRESS RELEASE FROM GROUP
Saratoga Casino & Raceway has 630 direct employees, many of which are union jobs. Employees are eligible for a variety of benefits, including health insurance, paid time off, a retirement plan with an employer match, bonuses, and more. A full commercial casino license will be granted in the eight-county region that includes Saratoga County, providing an opportunity for the casino to add 600-700 new good paying jobs with benefits in addition to hundreds of construction jobs.
“Lots of people have been talking about my job lately, but nobody bothered to ask me how I feel about this issue,” said Danelle Healey, a Human Resources Generalist at Saratoga Casino and Raceway. “I’ve worked here for ten years. I’ve grown with this company and my job has allowed me to raise a family and buy a home. I support the expansion of the current casino because I want to make sure others have the same opportunity I’ve had. In the HR office, we see 30-40 job seekers every week. They’re here because we offer good jobs, with good benefits, and – contrary to what some ill informed people have said – they’re exactly the kind of jobs that help keep our community strong.”
Charlie Hoffman, a 68-year employee of Saratoga Casino and Raceway, said: “I’m a lifelong Saratogian. I’ve been a part of this community for 90-years and have worked at Saratoga Casino and Raceway since 1946. I’ve seen the good times, as well as the bad, and I can tell you that the racing end of this business has never been stronger. Our racing season is longer than it was before the casino opened, purses are up and the harness track is a bigger part of racing than ever before. History proves that the casino has only strengthened a racing business that has been a cornerstone of Saratoga for 100 years, and there’s no reason to believe that would change if the casino was expanded.”
Kathleen Anderson, the Director of Entertainment at Saratoga Casino and Raceway and a 10-year employee, said: “Before I started here ten years ago, I was a single mom unsure of how I was going to send my two girls to college.
Today, I’m the proud mother of two college graduates. My family and I are part of this community, and when I hear people saying a casino has no place in Saratoga, I’m personally offended. The casino is already very much a part of this community, and so are the 630 people who work at Saratoga Casino and Raceway. My coworkers and I deserve to be heard, and any group saying they speak for the people of Saratoga in opposing the casino expansion certainly don’t speak for me, my family, or my coworkers.”
“What we heard today is the same thing that we have seen in the decades since the Raceway first came to Saratoga Springs,” said Dan Hogan, co-chair of Destination Saratoga. “Our region has thrived thanks to this world-class gaming destination. With a new casino coming to the region, we are dedicated to ensuring that any new casino works for Saratoga, and for the families and taxpayers who call our region home.”
In his State of the State address last week, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced an aggressive timeline to create jobs and generate new revenue for local communities, education and the state through expandedgaming. No potential bidder in the Capital Region is better suited to meet this timeline than Saratoga Casino and Raceway. The expanded casino would also generate $5.5 million for both the City of Saratoga Springs and Saratoga County, helping to offset property taxes.
For more information about our goals and to add your name in support, please visit www.DestinationSaratoga.com.