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Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Don't we already have a casino in Sudbury?A: No, we have " The Slots" which features 404 slot machines only. The new full casino will have 600+ slot machines and also have tables for card gambling, craps, roulette, and include "multiple dining and culinary options". This facility will attract a much broader demographic than the present patrons of "The Slots" in Chelmsford. The City ( yes, the City of Sudbury) estimated gambling losses will increase by 2-3X ( to 100-150 million) in the new casino based on their expected "cut" of the losses.
Q: Are you advocating the closure of "The Slots" in Chelmsford?A: No. We are advocating for no change to the present status of gambling in Greater Sudbury. At the closure of this campaign we will issue a challenge to the entertainment/cultural business community to offer alternative forms of entertainment for seniors. Further, we will encourage other efforts to encourage seniors re-engagement with the community. This is both a challenge and an opportunity for existing and new entertainment and cultural efforts.
Q: Casinos help out local charities don't they?A: Not significantly, of the $44 million we lose every year to the OLG from the slots, and the 10's of millions in scratch tickets, a small portion is given to The Trillium Fund which distributes money to local charities. In Sudbury the amount distributed is 850K +/- 5K each year which is only 1.7% of the money lost in "the slots" alone. In fact, the casino in Thunder Bay had to remove the word "charity" from its name after protests from local charities. Casinos have little to do with charity. Local bingo's and roving casino's, on the other hand, generally return 80-90%+ to charities.
Q: If we don't have a casino won't our residents simply go elsewhere to gamble?A: Some will, however, the losses to the community are far less than if we have our own casino. Thunder Bay doubled their gambling losses by building a casino in response to one across the border in the US. Further, the subsidized restaurant in the new casino severely effected the locally owned establishments and many closed up. And further, without a casino draining money from our entertainment budget, this will make other more economic and cultural friendly venues/events possible and attract a whole different type of tourist.
Q: But a casino means a hotel, and perhaps a convention center! What about that smart guy??A: The last place a community wants a tourist to go to when in town, is a casino. Ask anyone who lives in a community with one. ( We have! ) If the tourists go to the casino, that is where they spend their money, that is where they eat, that is where they get entertained etc. Casino tourism benefit the casinos/hotel complex and not much else in the community.
Further, Sudbury hotel occupancy rates are below the provincial average at 59% and are trending negative, from latest statistics from the Ontario Ministry of Tourism ( Jan-May 2016 ). Bottom line is that there is not an urgent need for more hotel rooms in Sudbury. You can view the statistics here:
Note: A few business owners thought a higher end hotel would be plus for business. A higher end hotel, without a casino would be a welcome addition to our community according to discussions with canvassed business leaders.
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