Racino Failure: Monticello Raceway casino closing

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Monticello Harness track remains open

MONTICELLO – The casino operation at the Monticello Casino and Raceway will soon close, but the harness racing track will stay open for now.

Empire Resorts, the Monticello racino’s parent company, will close its electronic gaming operations at the track “on or about” April 23, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Tuesday.

Forty employees will remain at the raceway, while the operation’s other 160 can take jobs at the nearby Resorts World Catskills casino, also owned by Empire Resorts, or receive severance packages.

“We’re happy about the fact that they have offered jobs to laid-off members, and we’re constructively talking with the company about adding additional severance,” Hotel Trades Council, the union that represents most of the workers, said in a statement.

Empire Resorts Inc. said horse racing will continue. But, in a written statement and in an SEC filing, it made no guarantees about the track’s long-term future.

The goal for now, the company said, is to avoid cannibalizing revenues from the 2,157 slot machines and 150 table games at Resorts World Catskills in the Town of Thompson.

Plus, Empire Resorts, which has averaged losses of between $10 million and $13 million per month since it began its phased opening of the Resorts World Catskills last February, is looking to improve earnings…

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About Editor

Rich Nilsen is a 16-time qualifier to the National Horseplayers Championship (NHC), an event he has cashed in four times. He was the first player to finish in the top 10 twice. He cashed on the NHC Tour for 2018 with a 19th overall finish. Rich was also a winner of a $24,000 package into Kentucky Derby Betting Championship I. A former executive with Brisnet.com, Rich is a graduate of the University of Louisville Equine Business Program and is founder of AGameofSkill.com, a site devoted to horse racing education and promotion.

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