Confused? Late Monday night, the Anne Arundel Council approved Bill 82-09, which changes the zoning regulations to allow Cordish Cos. to build the largest slots parlor in Maryland. The Council also approved Bill 81-09, which would allow slots at other locations in the County, but only if those sites are north of Rt. 32. This would include Laurel Park but not Arundel Mills.
Now the final decision is left to County Executive John R. Leopold. He can chose to veto either bill and several sources, including The Washington Post, Baltimore Sun and The Daily Record, have all stated that Leopold will more than likely veto Bill 81-09, thus allowing Cordish to move forward with building near Arundel Mills.
If Leopold decides in favor of Cordish, the group Stop Slots at Arundel Mills, told the press Monday night that they plan to launch a petition drive in hopes of creating a referendum that would be put on the Anne Arundel County general ballot this November. The group would need about 19,000 signatures and file the petition within 45 days of the bill becoming a law.
So what does that mean for the future of slots at Maryland? Not really sure at this point. Send us your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org or comment here on this blog.
For more on this topic, read these articles:
Bidders Line Up For Laurel and Pimlico
December 18 was the deadline for anyone interested in bidding on Laurel Park, Pimilico and/or the Bowie Training Center to contact the Magna Entertainment Corp., which currently owns the facilities and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March of 2009. Six parties expressed their interest in the assets that will be officially auctioned this month.
Among the bidders are former owner Joseph A. De Francis, the Cordish Cos. and Penn National Gaming Inc. Cordish is currently pushing for a slots casino at Arundel Mills and told The Baltimore Sun that he still intended to have slots at Arundel Mills even if he purchased the tracks.
Penn National has already started construction on their 1,500-machine facility in Perryville, which is scheduled to open in October 2010. Representatives from Penn National hope to be able to put slots at Laurel Park if the Arundel County Council does not approve the zoning change needed to allow for Cordish’s facility.
The names of the other three bidding parties have not been released to the public.