City Councillor Adam Vaughan warns about casino debt
KJ Mullins-Toronto: Toronto may soon be the next city in Ontario with a casino. City Councillor Adam Vaughan warns that move would put residents at risk of debt and decreased funds for social services.
Those in favor of a Toronto casino say that a gambling hall will bring big bucks to the city. The fact is casinos have taken a big hit during the recession. One of the main contenders for a new casino in the city, MGM has not had a profit in the past three years and carries a debt load of over $13 billion. The other two contenders, both with Vegas casinos, Caesars Entertainment Corp and Sheldon Adelson of the Las Vegas Sands Corp. have huge debts. Adelson’s company is also being investigated for allegations of bribery and money laudering.
If the casino does succeed the money coming in is not very likely to stay in town. Between 35 percent to 87 percent of those funds are generally sent to vendor contracts, capital investment dividends and parent company profit sharing according to No Casino Toronto.
Most people think that a casino will bring in tourists but casinos bread and butter are local residents who stare dazed in front of slot machines. Casinos are a powder keg for problem gamblers. When gamblers lose they hope to win back their money creating a circle of debt. As Vaughan says in an email, “Like the compulsive gamblers they create, casinos all over the continent are losing big right now. Instead of walking away from their losses, they are upping the ante by trying to open new operations in more cities. What they are hoping to find is a new generation of gamblers to keep the house afloat. Let’s keep Toronto as far away from this mess as possible.”
If you oppose the planned casinos there is a chance to learn the facts. On October 10 there will be a special public consultation session in Council Chambers at Toronto City Hall beginning at 6:00 p.m. Those who would like to speak are asked to contact the Clerk, Ros Dyers either by email email@example.com or phone 416-392-7033.