New York State is on the verge of great changes and the local gambling field has to act accordingly staying as flexible as possible. Jeff Gural, owner of the Tioga Downs casino, recently made a prediction about the pattern of casino reopening that could take place. He thinks that the state would begin the gradual process from areas that are generally less populated.
As a result of this, the reopening of businesses would not result in a flood of individuals possibly risking their health in the process. Mr. Gural made it clear that casinos located in the rural areas of New York State are likely to return to their regular operation sooner than casinos in more populated cities and tourist destinations.
Reopening Might Happen in Upcoming Months
Mr. Gural oversees the operation at Tioga Downs, as well as Vernon Downs racetrack also offering video lottery terminals in the vicinity of Syracuse. Both of them are closed for business, as the unprecedented situation mandated a lockdown and social distancing across the state. Brick-and-mortar casino venues have remained closed since mid-March and for the time being, a reopening is not about to happen soon.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo considers it appropriate for planning to begin early on, to pave the way for the eventual reopening of many businesses. It is likely that this would happen first in the areas with a smaller population, such as the rural regions of the state. Upstate New York might witness the first businesses returning to their daily operation with customers. This relates to the Upstate New York commercial casino venues.
Non-essential businesses and schools are going to remain closed until May 15, with more action and reevaluation of the situation expected to take place after. Gov. Cuomo envisions a sort of a patchwork approach to the gradual reopening of businesses across New York State, as every region remains unique. Both tribal and commercial casinos remain closed for the time being, but neighboring states could end up drawing patrons.
Rival Casinos Attract Patrons
Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey are all areas that could attract New York casino patrons if they reopen casino venues before New York. This is projected to further harm the local gaming revenues. But this possibility also threatens the casino venues within the borders of the state. Upstate New York casinos could attract individuals typically frequenting the Central New York area.
Casino venues are among the popular venues for social congregations and crowd of patrons have been attracted to them thanks to the diverse gaming opportunities they feature. The summer of 2019 brought legal in-person sports wagering, which was just another intriguing gaming offering for the players to enjoy on the premises of the casino locations. Mobile sports wagering remains unavailable and players would have to wait until next year.
Tioga Downs Casino, Resorts World Catskills, Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady, and Del Lago Casino Resort are the four commercial venues that could be the first to reopen following further evaluation of the dynamic situation. During the lockdown, casino employees continue benefitting from paid time off.