Elmira/Corning Regional Airport
Voters on Proposition One
Written By: Tanja Rekhi
SOUTHERN TIER (WENY) -- It's election day and one of the big ticket items on ballots in New York is Proposition One. If it wins voter apporoval as many as seven full-fledged casinos would be built in New York.
Here locally, owner of Tioga Downs says he's ready to convert his racino into a casino and today, voters in the Southern Tier seemed pretty supportive. However, there are others who worry about gambling problems.
Four of the casinos will be built in upstate New York.
"Any jobs we can get in the Upstate is a definite bonus. It would be good if they brought 4 or 5 of them upstate, bring the money out of the city," said Michael Prior, Chemung County Voter.
Not all Chemung County voters feel this way. Some people are worried a casino may attract trouble, boost crime and enhance Elmira's reputation as a prison town.
In Tioga county -- home of Tioga Downs -- the racino owner is doing his best to rally support.
Most Tioga County voters I talked to would welcome a full-fledged casino.
"I personally don't care about going to casinos, I guess I'm not much of a winner," joked Alvera Owen, Tioga County voter. "There's a lot of people that enjoy it and we could use the money."
Some voters closer to Tioga Downs have concerns about what could happen in their neighborhoods if Tioga Downs is converted into a casino.
"Well there's always the possibility that people who have the least amount of money can become addicted," said Toni Chattin, Tioga County Voter. "I know from experience I have seen families that have very little and I'm not saying it was from gambling, but gambling can become an addiction to the point that your children do not get what they should get."
Supporters argue that the new casinos would generate thousands of jobs and millions in tax revenue.