Bill would double casino compensation for Lincoln, Tiverton
Lincoln and Tiverton, who both have casinos owned by Bally’s formerly Twin River will get $200,000 for sports betting in the state budget.
The House Finance Committee released a new proposal on Wednesday that would increase payments from their current annual allowance of $100K to double at an amount of 200 thousand dollars per year respectively. The idea was suggested during a meeting with fellow lawmakers Tuesday where Speaker K-Joseph Shekarchi mentioned it as one way to balance out future revenue streams
Shekarchi, the Town Manager for Tiverton, is confident that its residents will not suffer from budget cuts. Shekarchi said COVID stimulus has put all cities and towns in an unusually good fiscal position. “They are sitting on a pile of cash,” he says confidently to Representative John Edwards who had expressed concern about what would happen with recent budget reductions in education funding over $600K invested by taxpayers each year into public schools across district 12’s three municipalities-Tiverton included.
Shekarachi substantiates his assertion by saying local budgets were never as healthy before this time when they can see themselves moving off their deficit spending ways because now there’s more money coming than going out
Rhode Island launched sports betting in 2018.
The budget includes a clause that would allow Lincoln and Tiverton to claim their share of revenue from the casino if they are closed for more than 30 days in a year. This means, even after COVID’s three-week closure last November, we will not see any reduction. In 2020 when casinos were first shut down due to pandemic fears, our towns did not get their $3 million minimum payment because there was no income coming into them.
Lincoln and Tiverton can now expect something greater then 0% cut during future closures as well since this has been written into the contract with Covid Gaming Group (Covid). The original contract stipulated zero percent cuts on funds received by these two communities when gaming activities ceased
In other business, the House on Wednesday:
This week the House of Representatives, in accordance with Senate approval and support from Governor Gina Raimondo, passed a series of amendments to improve Rhode Island law. One amendment would allow East Providence residents access to Blackstone Valley Tourism Council services if they want them; another includes legislation that makes it easier for property owners who are seeking dimensional variances on zoning codes; and one more creates statewide police body camera programs which will be funded by both city agencies as well as private donations through ri-recovery.org .
The latest legislative decision from this past Tuesday is an important step towards progress within state government: passing approved legislation that allows East Providence citizens access to the tourism benefits offered by their neighboring communities without having full membership rights, creating new
John Hull, a Providence police officer, was one of many to speak in favor of body cameras. “I welcome it,” he said with an air that suggested his word should be taken as gospel by all present at the hearing. “We wear them every day.”