Long Islanders Protest against Las Vegas Sands’ Casino Project at the Nassau Coliseum

Long Islanders Protest against Las Vegas Sands' Casino Project at the Nassau ColiseumOn Sunday, Long Islanders opposing the $4-billion casino and resort project at the Nassau Coliseum gathered together to urge legislators to vote against Las Vegas Sand’s proposal. On Monday, policymakers are expected to vote on transferring the land lease for the gambling venue to Las Vegas Sands.

Casino naysayers claim that a gambling venue at the Nassau Coliseum will have more negative than positive effects. Westbury Mayor Peter I. Cavallaro confirmed that the site must be redeveloped, but in his view, there are better ways to go than bringing a casino to the area.

Casino Opponents Urge Lawmakers to Vote Against the Lease of Nassau Coliseum to Las Vegas Sands

On May 21, a group of Long Islanders gathered outside the Nassau Legislative Building to rally against Las Vegas Sands’ proposed casino at the Nassau Coliseum site. The protest was organized by the “Say No to the Casino Civic Association” in a bid to convince legislators to vote against a proposal seeking to transfer the lease of the Nassau Coliseum to Las Vegas Sands. Westbury Mayor Peter I. Cavallaro said that the site has been in urgent need of redevelopment for a somewhat long time, but building a casino there would not benefit Long Islanders.

On May 9, four out of seven members of the Nassau Legislature’s Rules Committee approved the transfer lease. The vote occurred after a 6-hour-long public hearing. Garden City Mayor Mary Carter Flanagan, who is against the casino project, urged members of the “Say No to the Casino Civic Association” to stand their ground and do something as this would be the last time they can voice their concerns.

As BonusInsider reported in April, Hofstra University even filed a lawsuit against the Nassau County Planning Commission for its early casino planning discussions. University officials strongly oppose Las Vegas Sands’ proposed casino and resort near its campus on Long Island.

Las Vegas Sands Gains Support for Its $4-Billion Nassau Coliseum Casino Project

Although the gambling venue faces stiff opposition, it has many supporters, with Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman being one of them. Casino proponents argue that Las Vegas Sands’ project would boost the county’s economy, create jobs, attract tourists, and support local businesses.

Ron Reese, senior vice president of global communications and corporate affairs for Las Vegas Sands, issued a statement in response to casino opponents’ concerns, in which he explained that company officials attended over 300 community meetings, during which they discussed the casino project in detail.

He used the statement to thank all institutions, including Nassau Community College, Long Island University, NAACP New York State Conference, Uniondale Chamber of Commerce and the Nassau Council of Chambers, the Long Island Association, and others, for supporting Las Vegas Sands’ casino project. In the statement, Reese noted that the company is open to further meetings with residents.