The Islandia village mayor told an audience at Tuesday’s board meeting that he will not support possible plans to double the number of video lottery terminals to 2,000 at the Jake’s 58 hotel and casino at the former Islandia Marriott.
The casino, owned by Suffolk County Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. and operated by Delaware North, is scheduled to open this month. It’s planned to host 1,000 video lottery terminals, or VLTs, which are electronic casino games, by this summer.
However, in a recent interview with Newsday, Suffolk OTB president Phil Nolan said the agency expects the Islandia casino to succeed and said he plans to ask the State Legislature’s permission to eventually add another 1,000 terminals.
At the board meeting, village resident Carla Caruso asked Mayor Allan Dorman whether he’d support the doubling of machines at the casino.
Dorman, who was an advocate of OTB’s plans for the site, said in response, “They’re going to ask me, OK, and I wouldn’t do it . . . I would not expand.”
He added that he was not in favor of a larger-scale casino than currently planned.
“The original arrangement was based on 1,000 machines. That 1,000 machines allows this to be a certain type of gambling,” Dorman said. “When it gets into all this other stuff, you’re going into a different area. I’m not interested in it. You can quote me on that.”
Nolan declined to comment on Dorman’s remarks except to say, “It’s going to be a good project.”
In an email, a Delaware North spokesman did not address Dorman’s comments, adding, “We are focused on opening the authorized 1,000 machines by this summer.”
As part of the agreement to operate in Islandia, Delaware North agreed to pay the village $47 million over 20 years.
Dorman also announced at the board meeting that Delaware North had made its initial first payments of $1 million for “tax relief” and another $1.53 million for the village’s baseball field.
“The village has got the money,” he said. “It’s in the bank.”