03/12/2015 11:59AM

Finger Lakes sues to prevent construction of nearby casino


The owner of Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack in Farmington, N.Y., has filed a lawsuit seeking to block the awarding of a casino license to a project slated for a property 25 miles from the track.

In the suit, Delaware North Cos., which owns Finger Lakes, alleges that the New York Gaming Facility Location Board disregarded the effects that a nearby casino would have on Finger Lakes’s own slot-machine operation, despite using the same criteria to deny licenses to developers in other parts of the state. The Gaming Facility Location Board in December tabbed three developers for potential licenses, including a project called “Lago” to be located in Tyre, about a 30-minute drive east of Finger Lakes.

“Lago’s selection by the New York State Gaming Commission’s location board was strikingly inconsistent and contradictory to the legislature’s mandates focused on boosting economic impact and providing additional revenue to the state,” Finger Lakes said in a statement.

The suit, filed in the state’s Supreme Court, contends that Finger Lakes “has suffered and will continue to suffer significant injury” if the Lago project opens. The project, the suit states, “endangers the very existence” of the track’s casino.

The three projects tabbed by the location board are currently preparing their formal license applications. The state’s gambling commission is expected to consider the applications later this year.