The Pros and Cons of the Proposed Penn State Casino

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Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) on Monday held a public hearing on the proposed Penn State casino. A lot of feedback was given by residents, business owners, local officials, and parents of Penn State University students at a public meeting held at Penn State Hotel and Conference Center.

Former Penn State University alumnus is partnering with Bally’s to invest $123 million to transform empty Nittany Mall into a category four casino. Ira Lubert believes that the casino will help transform the region economically and also revive the desolate mall.

Bally plans to convert 94, 000 square foot mall into a casino with up to 750 slots machines, 30 table games, and a sportsbook. A restaurant, bar, and entertainment space are included in the plan. Nittany representative also acknowledges that the casino could help lure back residents back, especially youth who prefer to shop online.

However, not all supported the idea that a casino could help communities. Carl Miller, a Bellefonte resident, argued that a casino would not help the poor, desperate and unemployed.

“On the contrary, casino gambling entices the poor to risk an already inadequate means of support on an exceedingly slim chance of financial gain.”

Lubert obtained a category 4 casino license last September for $10 million. Lubert is currently waiting for reviews on Nittany Mall before proceeding with the launch of a casino. PGCB is planning to hold a meeting in Harrisburg and further evaluate the Nittany Mall casino project. Finally, a seven-member will decide the fate of Bally’s development project.

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