Good Morning
Good Morning

Brookhaven officials discuss legal opinion about proposed Medford casino behind closed doors

Brookhaven officials are reviewing a letter drafted by a Manhattan law firm hired to investigate the town's legal options regarding a proposed video lottery parlor in Medford.

The town board discussed the letter from Nixon Peabody LLC during a closed-door portion of a work session Monday at Brookhaven Town Hall. Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said the letter would be released to the public "later this week."

"I want to discuss it with the board first," he said. Romaine declined to comment after the meeting.

Town officials hired the law firm to review Suffolk Regional Off-Track Betting Corp.'s plans for a $76 million casino with up to 1,000 video lottery terminals at the site of a former movie theater east of Route 112 on a Long Island Expressway service road.

Brookhaven officials have said they believe the town has no role in the casino decision because state laws exempt betting parlors and OTB facilities from local zoning. The town board passed anonbinding resolution against the casino in January.

Casino opponents, who have sued in an attempt to block the facility from being built, have asked town officials to take a stronger stand against the plan. Opponents have said the casino may draw crime and traffic to the community.

OTB officials last month reversed course and said they would not submit site plans for the casino to the Brookhaven Town Planning Board. Those plans instead will be reviewed by the state Gaming Commission, OTB president Phil Nolan said.

Supporters, including building trade unions and OTB employees, have said the facility would generate hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars for the struggling agency. Suffolk OTB officials plan to open the parlor early next year.

More news