Someone write to me and tell me why the Seneca Casino in Buffalo is a good idea. Seriously – I’m an advocate for just about anything that brings jobs and tourism to our hometown, but within reason.
Here is my thinking agin' it:
1. It isn’t going to bring in tourists. Back in the day, there were only casinos in Vegas and Atlantic City, so putting one somewhere outside those areas was novel. It isn’t anymore. There’ll be too much competition for this to be the catch-all solution for Buffalo.
1a. That means that the money this casino pulls in will be coming from locals who might otherwise spend it on Chippewa, or Hertel, or God forbid, Weg’s.
2. Yes jobs, but sucky jobs. The vast majority of the jobs that the Nation offers will be part time and minimum wage. Also, I’ve never worked in one myself, but I’m told the turnover rate for a casino like this is pretty fast. So not only are these new jobs going to be low-paying, but on average they don’t last very long.
3. Urban development can’t happen like it did in Niagara Falls, Ontario. I actually don’t know who owns that place, but I know that it’s on taxable land. That means that the Ontario gov’t is getting hundreds of millions of dollars each year in taxes that it can fold back into the community, making sure there’s still an opportunity for competition. The Buffalo casino will be Seneca owned, and not taxable. We’ll be lucky, I’m told, to get nine million dollars a year.
Look, I’m not against gambling – I like it. Mostly because I’m better at it than my brothers. My reasons against the casino are entirely economic. I’m actually ignoring all of the social implications, because I don’t think that’s something I can reliably argue (though, someone in Detroit or Niagara Falls, NY might be able to). I would really like to be okay with having a casino here, I really want to know that it is going to help my home, but I just don’t see that the benefit outweighs the cost. Give me your reasons for it. Comment here, or email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you can convince me, I’ll buy the first round and then kick your butt at hold’em when it opens.
1 year ago