Hooray for Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-Garden City) and State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx) for opposing the 1,000 video-lottery terminals that the Nassau Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. is planning for Belmont [“Casino opposed,” News, Jan. 6].

The VLTs are nothing more than computers that snatch dollars from people’s pockets. Gambling is an addiction that takes money people could use to feed their families or pay for necessities. If people want to gamble, let them go to Las Vegas or Atlantic City or Connecticut.

Casinos don’t belong in residential areas. If anyone wants to question how much money is lost to OTB every day, walk into an OTB parlor and look at the number of losing tickets littering the floor, filling the trash cans, or laying in the parking lot.

Gary Peckett, Baldwin

 

I’ve lived in Elmont, just south of Belmont Park, for more than 50 years, and I have children who attend the public schools [“The community and the casino,” Editorial, Jan. 11].

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I’ve seen this area fight back to become a neighorhood where residents take great pride in their families, homes and schools. We deserve better than being saddled with an increase in traffic and crime.

We need proposals filled with renewed prosperity for the area, not suggesting we become a dumping ground for an activity that no other area on Long Island wants.

The idea that gambling is gambling is an insult. On a race day at Belmont, you can watch families enjoying breakfast at Belmont and later playing in the outdoor areas set aside for kids. I can’t imagine a racino providing such an atmosphere.

Lori Halop, Elmont