Letter: Casino will be an economic boon
When I first ran for the New Hampshire House, I ran on the platform of creating jobs, reducing taxes and fees, and finding additional revenue sources. Many of my colleagues ran on this same platform. In this time of uncertainty, the House needs to come together and pass an expanded gaming bill that will lay the foundation for that platform.
Expanded gaming will provided 2,200 jobs to the residents of New Hampshire: roughly 1,000 construction jobs to build the proposed facility at Rockingham Park and the balance of 1,200 to support the facility once it is built.
This is only the beginning. Existing businesses will expand to service the casino, and new businesses will be created to support the influx of tourism. This influx will increase our rooms and meals tax revenue, liquor revenue and tourism revenue – dollars that we use for education, health and human services and the general business of the government. Estimates range from $100 million to $150 million in additional revenue with the expansion of gaming.
A similar proposal passed by the Pennsylvania legislature has added $6 billion to its state coffers. New Hampshire is in a position to reap the same benefit. The legislation currently being crafted will allow for expanded gaming in a highly regulated atmosphere. The special committee has worked tirelessly and will soon put forth legislation that answers all questions and concerns. Forty-one states have passed expanded gaming. Surely the New Hampshire Legislature can craft legislation that will work for us. I call upon my colleagues to pass an expanded gaming bill. Together we can create jobs, increase revenues and hold down taxes.
Rep. GARY AZARIAN