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Mayor Nagin: Gambling could be the answer for rebuilding NOLA

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  • Mayor Nagin: Gambling could be the answer for rebuilding NOLA

    QUOTE

    Mayor moves to heal New Orleans' lifeblood industry
    Nagin hopes more casinos will quickly bring back tourists

    NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- Mayor Ray Nagin called Friday for a major expansion of casino gambling in hurricane-hit New Orleans in a desperate attempt to quickly heal its battered lifeblood industry -- tourism.

    "We will probably limp along for the next three to five years unless we do something bold," said Nagin at a news conference. "And to me, this is a bold statement."

    New Orleans' economy largely depends on tourism revenue, and the city would face continued trouble without it -- although the city's French Quarter survived much of Hurricane Katrina's destruction. (Watch the mayor roll the dice on Vegas-style gambling -- 1:13)

    "Now is the time for us to think out of the box," Nagin said while expressing some hesitancy about the method of his plan.

    "I'd love to have another solution for the citizens. I'm not a big gaming person," he said.

    Visitors spent $4.9 billion in 2004, according to the city's convention and visitors bureau, which also rates the tourism industry as New Orleans' second-largest employer.
    Plan centers on hotels

    Under the mayor's proposal, hotels with at least 500 rooms located in a U-shaped zone in the city's downtown area could be converted into full-fledged casinos. Nagin said six or seven hotels would qualify under the proposal, if their owners chose to participate.

    Hotels on Canal Street -- the city's main thoroughfare at the edge of the French Quarter -- would be allowed to convert into casinos. However, those inside the French Quarter would not.

    Currently, state law allows just one land-based casino in New Orleans, which is operated by Harrah's Entertainment Inc. Casino boats are allowed to operate in the Mississippi River.

    Nagin said he didn't think gambling expansion would change the unique character of the city, which holds such well-known events as Mardi Gras and the New Orleans Jazz Festival.

    "I don't ever see a scenario where New Orleans becomes Las Vegas. New Orleans is way too unique," Nagin said. "Las Vegas has casinos. New Orleans has so much more. ... To me, this is just enhancing what we have and creating some excitement."
    State officials 'open' to idea

    Under Nagin's plan, the state and city would evenly split tax revenue generated by the new casinos. A financial settlement would have to be reached with Harrah's to give up its city monopoly on land-based gambling, he said.

    "They're not going to do that for free," he said.

    Nagin said he had discussed his proposal with Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco and her aides. He said they were "a little open to it."

    "I'm not saying they have endorsed it whole-heartedly, but they are open to the discussion," he said.

    Nagin said his plan would be beneficial for New Orleans and the rest of the state because the city accounts for about a third of Louisiana's economy, anything that accelerates the return of tourism would benefit the whole state.

    In addition, Orleans Parish accounts for 44 percent of all state income from tourism, according to the New Orleans Metropolitan Convention and Visitors Bureau.

    Before Nagin's plan could be implemented, it would have to be approved by city voters and the Louisiana Legislature.

    He said the "best scenario" would be for the legislature to approve the plan and put it before voters during a city election scheduled for February.

    Neighboring Mississippi -- which also was hit hard by Katrina on August 29 -- depends largely on the gaming industry. All 13 of Mississippi's floating casinos were destroyed in the storm. The closed or destroyed casinos cost the state $500,000 per day in lost tax revenue.

    Find this article at:
    http://www.cnn.com/2005/US/10/07/neworlean...inos/index.html
    [/b][/quote]

    "Can't buy what I want because it's free...
    Can't buy what I want because it's free..."
    -- Pearl Jam, from the single Corduroy

  • #2
    Great idea dumbass - suck more money out of the community.

    Comment


    • #3
      Nagin is a numbskull.
      Make America Great For Once.

      Comment


      • #4
        QUOTE(Airshark @ Oct 7 2005, 11:37 PM) Quoted post

        Great idea dumbass - suck more money out of the community.
        [/b][/quote]

        ++

        I am guessing most casinos were insured, but lets take more money out of the pockets of the working poor to support them.

        (yeah I know people work there and earn a living, but that doesn't mean getting more people to go gamble is the best way to help N.O.)
        Be passionate about what you believe in, or why bother.

        Comment


        • #5
          They should impose a boob tax.

          I'd pay it.

          Official Lounge Sponsor of Lou Brock (really) and Ryan Franklin (really)*

          * Payment processing. It will be official soon.

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          • #6
            Casinos aren't a bad idea...

            N'Awlins' bread and butter has always been tourism...it's really all they've had...

            It could be detrimental to local folks...if they're dumb enough to gamble their money away...but that's the case anywhere there are casinos...

            Nagin's trying to quickly rebuild his city's number one commodity - tourism...

            While he certainly should be eyeing the best interest of his citizens...he also needs to trust that they employ sound judgment for their own best interests...

            I'm surprised New Orleans hasn't convinced LA to legalize gambling prior to the hurricane...

            Hell, they cater to damn near every other vice...
            " Look, forget the myths the media's created about the White House--the truth is, these are not very bright guys, and things got out of hand."

            Comment


            • #7
              QUOTE(*007* @ Oct 7 2005, 11:35 PM) Quoted post
              The closed or destroyed casinos cost the state $500,000 per day in lost tax revenue.[/b][/quote]
              According to my calculator, this means $182 billion per year in tax revenue.

              Just for one state from one source!

              That's a lot of money. I'm glad the best, the brightest, and the most honest - i.e. all those who seek high office and employment with the state, public servants one and all - are there to decide how to spend it.

              Who said state governments were going broke?

              Rock on.

              Comment


              • #8
                It's sad when communties depend on a business that takes money from people who can afford it the least.
                Make America Great For Once.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think they need to find a way to get the "blue collar" folks back...without people to work those type of jobs NOLA is fucked no matter what the plan is.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    QUOTE(_STLfan_in_DFW @ Oct 8 2005, 02:22 AM) Quoted post


                    N'Awlins' bread and butter has always been tourism...it's really all they've had...[/b][/quote]

                    Ummm...the port, petro-chemical, fisheries.

                    QUOTE
                    I'm surprised New Orleans hasn't convinced LA to legalize gambling prior to the hurricane...
                    [/b][/quote]

                    There's a Harrah's casino on Poydras, block south of Tchopitoulas. This proposal would just expand it.

                    It's hard to look at the example of Las Vegas and conclude that you cannot build a successful city on the back of the gaming industry. There's a roadmap to success already there. All you have to do is follow it.

                    We already have way more corruption than anyplace else, so we're off to a good start.
                    From this day forward, I no longer shall tinker with the machinery of death.

                    For more than 20 years I have endeavored-indeed, I have struggled-along with a majority of this Court, to develop procedural & substantive rules that would lend more than the mere appearance of fairness to the death penalty endeavor.


                    I feel morally and intellectually obligated simply to concede that the death penalty experiment has failed.

                    The path the Court has chosen lessens us all. I dissent.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      ppg,

                      How about rebuilding the tourism industry on the abundant, or maybe once abundant local natural wildlife features? Didn't Louisiana's liscense plates once have the slogan "Sportsman's Paradise"?

                      I'm not anti casino, per say. I go once or twice a month, myself. But, I exercise financial control. I see far too many elderly and lower income people blowing their government checks trying to hit paydirt. Thsoe same people are soon calling relatives and friends begging for money to pay their living expenses.

                      Las Vegas is a different animal all together.
                      Make America Great For Once.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        QUOTE(The Kev @ Oct 8 2005, 07:47 AM) Quoted post

                        ppg,

                        How about rebuilding the tourism industry on the abundant, or maybe once abundant local natural wildlife features? Didn't Louisiana's liscense plates once have the slogan "Sportsman's Paradise"?

                        I'm not anti casino, per say. I go once or twice a month, myself. But, I exercise financial control. I see far too many elderly and lower income people blowing their government checks trying to hit paydirt. Thsoe same people are soon calling relatives and friends begging for money to pay their living expenses.

                        Las Vegas is a different animal all together.
                        [/b][/quote]

                        Don't know, other than the environment lost a long time ago to the 100 or so chemical and oil companies which dot the Mississippi River. Plus, I think it takes a certain type of outdoorsman who wants to go into the swamps and bayou, versus say southern Mississippi, where the hunting and fishing are virtually the same.

                        Speaking of bayou, I was out on the Teche yesterday, and man does it stink. I have no idea what died in Lake Bigeaux, (west of Whiskey Bay), but goddamn that smell was horrendous.
                        From this day forward, I no longer shall tinker with the machinery of death.

                        For more than 20 years I have endeavored-indeed, I have struggled-along with a majority of this Court, to develop procedural & substantive rules that would lend more than the mere appearance of fairness to the death penalty endeavor.


                        I feel morally and intellectually obligated simply to concede that the death penalty experiment has failed.

                        The path the Court has chosen lessens us all. I dissent.

                        Comment

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