WARWICK: Republican candidate for Governor Ken Block called out state leaders on the potential loss of gaming revenue due to upcoming competition from Massachusetts.
“Rhode Island is addicted to the revenue it receives from Twin River and Newport Grand and lacks a plan on how to overcome the shortfall we will face when the gaming facilities in Massachusetts open, “said Block. “We knew this day would in fact come and once again our state leaders show how out of touch they are with planning for Rhode Island’s future budget needs.”
Current annual gaming revenue projections are approximately $10 million from Twin River’s table games, and $320 million from the video lottery terminals at Twin River and Newport Grand. Gambling is the state’s third largest source of revenue.
“The fact that Twin River will have direct competition from a facility in Plainville, Massachusetts which is just 20 minutes away makes our situation even more alarming,” said Block. “In a state that ranks number one for unemployment we can’t afford to raise taxes to cover this shortfall. We continue to see shortsighted thinking from our elected officials with no plan to turn our state around.”
Last week the Massachusetts Gaming Commission made a decision to award a slots parlor license to the Plainridge harness racetrack in Plainville, Massachusetts.
“I am the only gubernatorial candidate with a specific plan to cut the expense side of the budget without causing harm to our state’s badly needed programs,” said Block. “The career politicians have gotten us into this mess and they continue to ignore what is right in front of them and staring them in the face.”