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Author Topic: Casino in Toronto  (Read 1866 times)

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Offline Peter D.

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Casino in Toronto
« on: April 18, 2013, 10:03:57 AM »
Hotly debated issue.  I'm not firm on an opinion either way, but understand both viewpoints.

Offline cw

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2013, 10:27:19 AM »
We have a sign up on our lawn against it.

The odds in casinos are rigged to favor them. That's a key way they make money. It has to be that way for them to survive ... and then a little greed kicks in so they make a bundle of dough.

One of the saddest places I've ever seen in North America is Atlantic city. The boardwalk and casinos glitter but everywhere else around them looked like massive devastation had hit with buildings and homes boarded up for miles around aside from pawn shops that say "We buy gold".

We arrived one day around 5:30pm and asked the doorman "Where is everybody?" It looked empty. He answered "We got their money already."

I saw a devastated elderly woman being wheeled out on a luggage cart and dumped on the sidewalk. I saw many people lose big time.

The government doesn't seem to mind because they clean up in taxes.

But it's just a legalized scamming operation that takes money from a majority of uneducated or addicted people who can't afford to lose it.

They sucked our next door neighbor, an 80+ year old widow, into gambling. Wiped out all her savings.

I just don't see much good or value add to our society with them. $5 local bingo or something like that is fine. But stay away from places that can cause people to lose big money they can't afford. Keeping them in somewhat remote places helps to reduce the number of lives they devastate.

Offline Corn Flake

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2013, 10:37:12 AM »
Agree CW... it's a horrible way for government to make money - by playing on the weaknesses of citizens, sucking them try, creating life long problems, etc etc etc.. and then the city/province/region becomes completely dependent on the revenue which does nothing but fill up budget shortfalls vs. creating new revenue streams to pay for things like public transit or other major infrastructure improvements, etc.

I agree that cheap slots or bingo is mostly harmless. A blackjack table at Fallsview with a $25 minimum bet, you can blow serious cash in a matter of minutes.  That kind of stuff is completely ridiculous.

Leave it to Rob Ford to support the lowest form of government revenue sources.

Offline Frank E

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2013, 10:46:31 AM »
We have a sign up on our lawn against it.

The odds in casinos are rigged to favor them. That's a key way they make money. It has to be that way for them to survive ... and then a little greed kicks in so they make a bundle of dough.

One of the saddest places I've ever seen in North America is Atlantic city. The boardwalk and casinos glitter but everywhere else around them looked like massive devastation had hit with buildings and homes boarded up for miles around aside from pawn shops that say "We buy gold".

We arrived one day around 5:30pm and asked the doorman "Where is everybody?" It looked empty. He answered "We got their money already."

I saw a devastated elderly woman being wheeled out on a luggage cart and dumped on the sidewalk. I saw many people lose big time.

The government doesn't seem to mind because they clean up in taxes.

But it's just a legalized scamming operation that takes money from a majority of uneducated or addicted people who can't afford to lose it.

They sucked our next door neighbor, an 80+ year old widow, into gambling. Wiped out all her savings.

I just don't see much good or value add to our society with them. $5 local bingo or something like that is fine. But stay away from places that can cause people to lose big money they can't afford. Keeping them in somewhat remote places helps to reduce the number of lives they devastate.

Jesus cw, that's a pretty one sided view.

According to what I've read, the problem gamblers are something like 5% of the population. 

Should we not allow there to be any steakhouses opening up too, because red meat creates heart conditions if you eat too much of it.  How about manufacturing plants?  They do a lot of damage to the local environment over time....bars create alcoholics, etc...

One thing casinos do do is bring an injection of outside money into the city...tourism dollars.  Toronto needs a bunch of money to get their books balanced, and to finance some much needed infrastructure improvements.  Toronto, and Hamilton for that matter, need something creative like this to gain some much needed funding.  It's not a perfect solution, but it's certainly a financially viable one.

Offline louisstamos

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2013, 11:03:02 AM »
I'm not adverse to expanding Woodbine to include gaming tables/single-game sports betting if they want to go that route.  I'm not really anti-gambling per say - I go to Woodbine every now and then for the horse races.  That being said, as a Liberty Village resident, I really don't want a casino in my neighborhood.

On top of the reasons CW already listed, I really don't think a single casino would draw that much in terms of tourism, and the jobs it would "create" would basically be stolen from other place as people would be taking their entertainment dollars away from local restaurants, shops, or even directly from the Woodbine casino.  Even if you want the "resort," why is the casino necessary.  You have the Amphitheater, Ricoh, Sugar Beach, the ACC, the Guvernment/Kool Haus all in the area for events of different sizes, and the MTCC for conferences/events like the Comic Con, which is right on the subway line and accessible.  Why not put the money in improving the MTCC than building a new casino that most residents don't want?

I know this sounds like "A casino in Woodbine is fine, I just don't want one in my backyard," but that is how I feel.  We've already got a casino - and if you believe it draws "tourism," it's near the airport.  Why not just make that one better?

Offline cw

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2013, 11:35:17 AM »
We have a sign up on our lawn against it.

The odds in casinos are rigged to favor them. That's a key way they make money. It has to be that way for them to survive ... and then a little greed kicks in so they make a bundle of dough.

One of the saddest places I've ever seen in North America is Atlantic city. The boardwalk and casinos glitter but everywhere else around them looked like massive devastation had hit with buildings and homes boarded up for miles around aside from pawn shops that say "We buy gold".

We arrived one day around 5:30pm and asked the doorman "Where is everybody?" It looked empty. He answered "We got their money already."

I saw a devastated elderly woman being wheeled out on a luggage cart and dumped on the sidewalk. I saw many people lose big time.

The government doesn't seem to mind because they clean up in taxes.

But it's just a legalized scamming operation that takes money from a majority of uneducated or addicted people who can't afford to lose it.

They sucked our next door neighbor, an 80+ year old widow, into gambling. Wiped out all her savings.

I just don't see much good or value add to our society with them. $5 local bingo or something like that is fine. But stay away from places that can cause people to lose big money they can't afford. Keeping them in somewhat remote places helps to reduce the number of lives they devastate.

Jesus cw, that's a pretty one sided view.

According to what I've read, the problem gamblers are something like 5% of the population. 

Should we not allow there to be any steakhouses opening up too, because red meat creates heart conditions if you eat too much of it.  How about manufacturing plants?  They do a lot of damage to the local environment over time....bars create alcoholics, etc...

One thing casinos do do is bring an injection of outside money into the city...tourism dollars.  Toronto needs a bunch of money to get their books balanced, and to finance some much needed infrastructure improvements.  Toronto, and Hamilton for that matter, need something creative like this to gain some much needed funding.  It's not a perfect solution, but it's certainly a financially viable one.

That claim is rather questionable:
http://www.usnews.com/usnews/culture/articles/960115/archive_033863_3.htm
A U.S. News computer analysis of 55 counties that got casinos beween 1990 and 1992 suggests that casinos do not create significant economic expansion. The increase in new businesses in these counties--about 4 percent--matched that for the rest of the nation. Restaurant growth lagged slightly in counties with casinos, while employment rates were a bit higher. William Hall, who came to a similar conclusion in a study for Illinois's Economic and Fiscal Commission, says economic development tends to be a wash because "most places overestimate the amount of tourism they eventually get. Most gambling appears to be by local people. In that case, you're moving money around in the economy, rather than bringing in new money."

If they blow their money at the casino, they don't have it to spend on local goods and services.

Manufacturing companies can have environmental issues but only IF they're not regulated properly. And if they cause an environmental problem they can be held accountable. Casinos do not provide reparations to folks who lose their shirt. But the many manufacturing companies that operate properly provide a business that adds value - producing product that can be sold around the country or world wide. Adding value and selling it around the world is how countries gain wealth.

I'd rather better museums/institutions, schools & businesses - things that add real value to attract  people and money to my community than attracting a crop of gamblers.

Offline Britishbulldog

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2013, 11:45:31 AM »
We have a sign up on our lawn against it.

The odds in casinos are rigged to favor them. That's a key way they make money. It has to be that way for them to survive ... and then a little greed kicks in so they make a bundle of dough.

One of the saddest places I've ever seen in North America is Atlantic city. The boardwalk and casinos glitter but everywhere else around them looked like massive devastation had hit with buildings and homes boarded up for miles around aside from pawn shops that say "We buy gold".

We arrived one day around 5:30pm and asked the doorman "Where is everybody?" It looked empty. He answered "We got their money already."

I saw a devastated elderly woman being wheeled out on a luggage cart and dumped on the sidewalk. I saw many people lose big time.

The government doesn't seem to mind because they clean up in taxes.

But it's just a legalized scamming operation that takes money from a majority of uneducated or addicted people who can't afford to lose it.

They sucked our next door neighbor, an 80+ year old widow, into gambling. Wiped out all her savings.

I just don't see much good or value add to our society with them. $5 local bingo or something like that is fine. But stay away from places that can cause people to lose big money they can't afford. Keeping them in somewhat remote places helps to reduce the number of lives they devastate.

Jesus cw, that's a pretty one sided view.

According to what I've read, the problem gamblers are something like 5% of the population. 

Should we not allow there to be any steakhouses opening up too, because red meat creates heart conditions if you eat too much of it.  How about manufacturing plants?  They do a lot of damage to the local environment over time....bars create alcoholics, etc...

One thing casinos do do is bring an injection of outside money into the city...tourism dollars. Toronto needs a bunch of money to get their books balanced, and to finance some much needed infrastructure improvements.  Toronto, and Hamilton for that matter, need something creative like this to gain some much needed funding.  It's not a perfect solution, but it's certainly a financially viable one.

That point about tourism is a crock of poop.  I have the numbers out here in Atlantic Canada that prove that both the 'racino' at the Charlottetown racetrack as well as the casino in Halifax beside the pier for the cruise ships are drawing less tourists then the government was expecting and the local drain on the residents is much higher than originally projected.

I will be upfront and let everyone know that I have worked/volunteered with the marginalized for over 25 years now so I do have a bias against it from the 5% point of view for sure.  Like cw noted, having the vunerable, which is typically fixed income people in society (read:welfare and seniors) taken advantage of is disgusting. Plain and simple.

I was the one who represented the position against having a casino in NB both on behalf of my city and to the Province of NB. The 'moral' dilemma of allowing legalized gambling, selling red meat, etc is only one of the SEVEN issues of setting up a casino in a city.
All The Best
Dan

Offline Britishbulldog

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2013, 11:53:27 AM »

That claim is rather questionable:
http://www.usnews.com/usnews/culture/articles/960115/archive_033863_3.htm
A U.S. News computer analysis of 55 counties that got casinos beween 1990 and 1992 suggests that casinos do not create significant economic expansion. The increase in new businesses in these counties--about 4 percent--matched that for the rest of the nation. Restaurant growth lagged slightly in counties with casinos, while employment rates were a bit higher. William Hall, who came to a similar conclusion in a study for Illinois's Economic and Fiscal Commission, says economic development tends to be a wash because "most places overestimate the amount of tourism they eventually get. Most gambling appears to be by local people. In that case, you're moving money around in the economy, rather than bringing in new money."

If they blow their money at the casino, they don't have it to spend on local goods and services.

Manufacturing companies can have environmental issues but only IF they're not regulated properly. And if they cause an environmental problem they can be held accountable. Casinos do not provide reparations to folks who lose their shirt. But the many manufacturing companies that operate properly provide a business that adds value - producing product that can be sold around the country or world wide. Adding value and selling it around the world is how countries gain wealth.

I'd rather better museums/institutions, schools & businesses - things that add real value to attract  people and money to my community than attracting a crop of gamblers.

Absolutely, cw.

1)Here in Moncton, it was proven that the big beautiful Casino complex being built was going to generate lower municipal taxes than if the property had been used for middle class housing (which is the level of community the casino was built in).  Since the race track is already in Toronto I can see this as a non-issue possibly.  But this is a fact none the less.
All The Best
Dan

Offline Britishbulldog

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2013, 12:09:19 PM »
2) We are a city of around 100,000 and it was shown that the casino was hoping to draw $200 MIL out of the local economy.  The goal of a casino is to consume all the disposable finances from responsible adults.  It directly affects the money that previously was given to the local stores, museums, amusement parks, etc.  Casinos are not typically run from local owners but from companies abroad which unfortunately funnels the money out that used to be left in the community.

3) Labour groups contacted me since most casinos have deplorable working conditions...and I am not listing the crap that goes on with staff in Las Vegas and Atlantic City.  I am refering to what has happened here in Canada with our decent labour laws.  I have articles to support the terrible time for staff even here in the Halifax casino and even my friend. who was part of the training of staff here in Moncton, quit because the the stupidity towards the staff amoungst other things. 
All The Best
Dan

Offline Britishbulldog

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2013, 12:53:38 PM »
4) Crime increase.  Although not as extreme as drugs, problem gambling does increase crime.  Mostly petty theft as perpetrators go through neighborhood yards looking for things they can flip quickly causing break-ins of houses, garages, sheds and vehicles.  Muggings also occur. Fact.   ***side note is there is potential for insurance costs to increase depending on the amount of crime that increases.  1 casino shouldn't cause too much of a concern for that.

5) Money laundering.   I actually was watching the reports of money laundering in Niagara Falls as the casino was approved in Moncton.  Having a casino near you is supposed to attract visitors but the proponents aren't honest in who the visitors include.  Organized crime is the biggest benefactor of having a casino nearby to launder money but pimps and drug dealers deeply appreciate the casino as well.  For those on this site not familiar with how it works, one example happening already is a drug dealer comes into the casino with a duffle bag (yes, it was as bold as that in Niagara Falls!!), pumps the bills in the machine and then hits cash out. They then proceed with the ticket and receive their 'winnings'.  They get stopped by law enforcement outside and it is too late.  The money is now legitimate winnings.  ***Ontario had put a $10,000 cap on winnings a couple of years ago but based on reports that casinos weren't respecting it CBC went in with actors to simulate laundering and with hidden cameras were not only able to get the casino to ignore the $10,000 cap, the casino ignored it and didn't even get photo ID from the actor requesting the excessive cheque!!  I might still have the link to the article somewhere.  After the casino were told that it was captured on camera they finally stopped denying that it could happen and stated that it was only a mistake of that particular employee that day. 

I encourage you to type 'money laundering ontario' in google.ca and see what crap is already going on and what the concerns are for this point alone.

6) Municipal financial responsibilty.  The casino was supposed to generate atleast $25 MIL in Moncton and the city was supposed to receive $1.5 MIL in taxes from that...which they were supposed to be grateful for.  Unfortunately the police requested an increased budget to handle the issues that surround a casino which is unlike any other job creation prospect in our city, tourism destination, entertainment complex, etc.  The bill...$1.5 MIL for the police alone!! That does not take into account any other municipal expense!!  Saddest part?  The casino has only been able to generate $15.8 MIL in revenue so we don't even have the tax base to pay the additional police.

7) if the moral issues are not brought forth and this issue is approached simply from a cold analytical and business perspectives, we have failed the weakest amoungst us.  It is shocking that this whole issue involves REAL people gambling but many casino supporters angrily don’t want REAL faces associated with it.  This casino issue is more than a numbers game (excuse the pun) but deals with real people, with real money and real pain.
All The Best
Dan

Offline cw

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2013, 01:30:12 PM »
Good write up, Britishbulldog  :)

Offline OldTimeHockey

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2013, 02:10:21 PM »
Just because the government makes a boatload of money off cigarettes and alcohol(to other detrimental drugs), it doesn't make it right.

Casino's kill people's livelihoods, destroy families, and rip apart communities. As much as I'd like to get a portion of the idiots welfare check that's defrauding the community by having him lose it at the casino, I worry more about the low to middle income households who's kids will go without meals because daddy/mommy lost the pay cheque at the slots. Isn't Bingo bad enough?

Offline hockeyfan1

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2013, 04:05:25 AM »
In one simple word I vote...NO.

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Re: Casino in Toronto
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2013, 04:05:25 AM »