Amy Veri: Proposed Tiverton casino a bad deal for everyone
The proposed casino in Tiverton is not the shining grace that Twin River is marketing. Under newly enacted legislation, the state will receive less revenue than it does currently from the Lincoln and Newport casinos. There is a 0.5 percent reduction in revenue for the state, from 16 percent to 15.5 percent.
Twin River is “guaranteeing” the Town of Tiverton $3 million in annual revenue. However, what Twin River fails to underscore is that the state will be on the hook for any shortfall. That means if Twin River does not meet projected earnings, the taxpayers of Rhode Island will have to make up the difference.
This is important because Twin River’s revenue projections for the proposed Tiverton casino were based upon their assumption that no casino would be built in Taunton, Mass. However, the $1 billion First Light Resort and Casino broke ground in Taunton in April.
A closer inspection of Twin River’s revenue projections for the Tiverton casino shows an anticipated loss of revenue for 2019. So, within one year of the casino opening, Twin River expects that it will lose money. Be ready to break out your checkbooks, taxpayers.
Finally, what has not been emphasized is the increase in insurance premiums that Tiverton residents will face. Homeowners insurance and car insurance will increase because of the social ills associated with casinos (e.g. increased crime). Tiverton residents should anticipate a tax hike too, to cover the cost of the demand placed on police and rescue.
Casinos are built to keep business inside, not to benefit local businesses or the community. Rhode Islanders: Think twice about how you vote on Question One. Do we really need another taxpayer-backed mistake?
The writer is a candidate for the state Senate, District 12 (Little Compton, Tiverton, Middletown, Newport).