PA Board to Hold Hearing on Parx Mini-Casino
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board will hold a public hearing March 25 in Shippensburg Township, at which residents can comment on the proposal of Greenwood Gaming to open a mini-casino under Greenwood’s license for Parx Casino in Bensalem.
Mini-casinos, created by the state’s 2017 gaming expansion law, are limited to 750 slot machines and 40 table games, with bids for first round of licenses restricted to current land-based casinos. The satellite facilities are theoretically situated to serve areas where there are no current casinos. None can be closer than 25 miles to a current facility.
Parx Casino is proposing to build a mini-casino near Exit 29 of Interstate 81 in Shippensburg Township. Parent Greenwood has indicated the facility could be open as early as August 2020—a miniature version of the Parx casino, opening with an initial 475 slots and 40 electronic table-game terminals, on which patrons bet on the spin of a live central roulette game or other live games.
The new property would employ about 200 people, 160 of them full time. Construction would temporarily employ about 350 workers and have an impact of $60 million.
Greenwood Gaming paid $8.1 million to the gaming board one year ago for the license—not much more than the $7.5 million minimum— to locate a small casino within a 30-mile-diameter circle centered around a point in South Newton Township, Cumberland County. The company went to Shippensburg Township after failing to get Carlisle and South Middleton Township to revoke their votes to ban mini-casinos in their jurisdictions.
The Parx mini casino would compete with Penn National’s larger Hollywood Casino in Grantville.
The Monday, March 25 hearing will take place at 4 p.m. in the second-floor Spinnaker Room in the SU Conference Center at Shippensburg University.
Individuals or groups that want to share oral or written testimony at the hearing must register ahead of time, by noon March 22. Do so online at gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov; click the “Parx Casino Shippensburg Public Input Hearing” link under the QuickLinks section of the home page.
A list of all parties who have registered to speak will be posted on the board’s website beginning one week before the hearing. It will be updated.
Those who cannot attend the public hearing but want to submit written comments can do so prior to the hearing date through the same web site link, by e-mail to email@example.com, or by fax to 717-265-7416. Mailed comments must be postmarked no later than March 22, 2019 and mailed to:
PA Gaming Control Board
P.O. Box 69060
Harrisburg, PA 17106
Attention: Board Clerk
All information the board receives during the hearing will be included in the record upon which the board will grant or deny a license.
There will be another public hearing later in Harrisburg. Greenwood representatives will give oral arguments, and gaming board members can ask questions before making a licensing decision.