Foxwoods: Gaming board ignored proof of financial stability and denied the casino interest its due process

In a legal volley fired back at the state gaming commission earlier this month, Philadelphia Entertainment Development Partners – the team behind the Foxwoods Casino effort – says the board did not properly give PEDP due process in the battle to keep its license and failed to acknowledge the project’s financial wherewithal.

PEDP asks Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court to either overturn the gaming board’s decision to revoke the license, or order the gaming board to give PEDP due process – with instruction on what laws govern that process.  Read the legal brief here.

The document is a response to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board’s earlier request that the court dismiss PEDP’s petition asking the court to reinstate its license. The PGCB stated in that document that the casino venture had all due process it was entitled to. PEDP had numerous opportunities to prove itself capable of opening a casino, but repeatedly missed deadlines to provide definitive financial documents, renderings and construction time lines, and  “did not have the requisite financial suitability to develop the casino for which the Board awarded it a license.”

In its new filing, the casino team’s attorneys say their client proved its financial suitability by twice negotiating financing deals during extremely difficult fiscal times. The first, the document states, was with Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn, who later backed out of the deal – an unexpected move that was not PEDP’s fault. The second was with Harrah’s, and the documents provided to the board provided proof of financial fitness that the PGCB ignored, the PEDP filing states.

That documentation meets standards established by the state supreme court to determine financial stability, the document states. “Major commercial banks simply do not commit $200 million in financing to development projects that are not financially viable, nor do investors commit $75 million in equity financing to projects that are not financially viable.”

Contact the reporter at kgates@planphilly.com

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