The race to win one of New York State’s coveted (and as yet, un-awarded) casino licenses heated up this week as officials from the Las Vegas Sands signed a 99-year lease deal for a proposed casino site at the Nassau Hub. Located in a high-income slice of Long Island, the deal is a big gamble for a company with some big plans.
According to reports published on abc7ny.com, the Las Vegas Sands will be paying the county a $60 million fee to take control of the sprawling property that once housed the Nassau Coliseum. The money is paid up-front and will not be refunded if the company winds up not getting one of the three coveted New York downstate casino licenses. Until a casino license is actually awarded, the Las Vegas Sands will be paying out $5 million a month in rent on the site, that rents hikes up to $10 million a month.
The Sands has big plans for the site and is looking to spend about $4 billion to redevelop its 76 acres into a sprawling casino resort with spas, entertainment venues and more. While that would be a huge boon to the Sands, local residents and nearby Hofstra University are not nearly as enthusiastic about the proposed project. Officials at the University say that Nassau County didn’t provide proper notice of the deal, and are suing to stop it from moving forward.
Nassau County says that, if built, the proposed casino would bring in nearly $100 million worth of revenue a year to the region.