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Cuomo Eyes Back-Up Gambling Expansion Plan If Albany Does Not Approve More Casinos

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The Cuomo administration is hedging its bets on gambling in New York State.

Legislation pending in Albany, which could be voted on shortly, would bring up to four Las Vegas-style casinos around the state, although not in the city.

If approved, it would then go before state voters in November.

But if it fails, the state is considering increasing the number of video slot machine centers or video lottery terminals, including some in the city, like the Resorts World racino at the Aqueduct racetrack in Queens.

However, even the governor's supporters are warning him not to put all his cards on the table.

"I think that we're putting the carriage before the horse," said Queens Assemblyman Philip Goldfeder. "I think that right now the bill the governor is trying to bring to the table relates to full enhanced gaming. Additional VLTs is a separate issue and I know, as a Legislature, we look forward to dealing with that issue if it ever came to it. But to loop everything together is a mistake."

A spokesperson for the governor says the move would be intended to make up for lost revenue, adding in a statement that no racino has a "lifetime monopoly."

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