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Nassau OTB eyes temporary spot for video gambling parlor

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano is seen in

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano is seen in Mineola on Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2015. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Nassau Regional Off-Track Betting will select a temporary site for up to 1,000 video slot machines and electronic table games by Dec. 1, with the facility opening as early as the spring, County Executive Edward Mangano said Tuesday.

Mangano's 2016 budget proposal, released Tuesday, projects $20 million in new revenue for the county from the video lottery terminal parlor.

The temporary VLT parlor could operate for a maximum of 18 months as OTB pursues a permanent location, Mangano said.

Mangano declined to identify possible locations for the temporary gaming parlor. Sources said the agency is considering Belmont Racetrack as the permanent home for the VLTs.

"Each month that you don't have the VLT is a month that you don't have a significant amount of revenue, not just for the county but for the state and OTB," Mangano said.

OTB officials declined to comment on the budget proposal.

In 2013, state lawmakers approved legislation allowing Nassau and Suffolk OTBs each to erect a gambling parlor with 1,000 video slot machines.

In December, Nassau OTB selected the vacant Fortunoff building in Westbury to house the VLTs, but abandoned the project in the face of strong opposition from local, county and state officials.

Suffolk spent $10.95 million last year to purchase a former movie theater in Medford for a VLT parlor. While awaiting approvals, Suffolk OTB and its private casino operator, Delaware North, are considering opening a temporary facility with 150 to 200 VLTs at an existing branch.

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