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Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints paym

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints payments 07:52 AM CDT on Wednesday, June 8, 2005 Melinda Deslatte / Associated Press BATON ROUGE -- Tax bills backed by Gov. Kathleen Blanco to help raise money for the ...

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Old 06-09-2005, 06:00 PM   #1
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Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints paym

Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints payments

07:52 AM CDT on Wednesday, June 8, 2005


Melinda Deslatte / Associated Press



BATON ROUGE -- Tax bills backed by Gov. Kathleen Blanco to help raise money for the state's annual payments to the New Orleans Saints remain stalled, so the House approved a different financing mechanism for the Saints deal: slot machines at the Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans.




Associated Press

According to lawmakers, some of the tax money generated from the airport slots would go toward paying the state's contract with the Saints.

If voters from Jefferson Parish -- where the airport is located -- approve the slot machines, some of the tax money generated from the slots would go toward the state's contract with the Saints, under an amendment added to the slot machine bill before the House shipped the legislation to the Senate in a 55 to 44 vote Tuesday.


"It would be a horrible black eye on the state of Louisiana to let this franchise move or to let them get out of the contract," said Rep. Danny Martiny, R-Kenner, sponsor of the Saints amendment.


Martiny said it was an alternative way to help the state deal with its projected annual shortfalls in its payments to the team -- part of a 10-year, $186 million agreement negotiated by Gov. Mike Foster's administration in 2001.


The state is estimated to be about $10 million short on its $15 million payment due to the Saints on July 5, and Martiny said he didn't believe the Legislature would approve using general state tax dollars to fill in the hole.


Blanco is pushing tax hikes on New Orleans hotels, rental cars and football tickets to raise money for the Saints deal, but the tax package has run into problems from New Orleans area lawmakers who want the money to be used for other things. The taxes were on the schedule for a Wednesday House committee meeting, though it was unclear whether they would be discussed.


A spokeswoman for the governor said Blanco's staff was reviewing the language added to the slots bill but still had plans to move forward with the separate tax package.


Under Rep. Cedric Richmond's bill, slot machines would be placed in areas open only to ticketed passengers at Armstrong airport, past security checkpoints and in enclosed areas -- if local voters approve.


A 21.5% tax would be placed on slot machine proceeds, and estimates are that the machines could raise anywhere from $15 million to $28 million a year, Richmond said.


After the payment to the Saints was made, the rest of the money would be split among several areas. Police pay raises in New Orleans would be paid for with the dollars and landing fees at the airport would be lowered. Jefferson Parish and the city of Kenner also would receive a portion of the tax revenue.


Some money would cover the administrative costs for having the slot machines.


Blanco tried to renegotiate the state's deal with Saints owner Tom Benson, but Benson called off negotiations until after the 2005 season. The current deal expires after the 2010 season, but it enables the Saints to end the deal after this season by repaying $81 million.


------


House Bill 799 can be found at www.legis.state.la.us


(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

http://www.wwltv.com/sports/saints/s...2f341e00d.html
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Old 06-10-2005, 09:20 AM   #2
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

The state is estimated to be about $10 million short on its $15 million payment due to the Saints on July 5, and Martiny said he didn't believe the Legislature would approve using general state tax dollars to fill in the hole.
Here's what worries me. The legislature passed the proposed budget without any money for the Saints. Now they're saying that they won't use the General Fund to cover the Saints agreement. They keep talking about ways to generate new long-term revenue. That's all fine and good, but what the plan for the $10 million shortfall on the payment due in LESS THAN A MONTH?! Does anyone know? It won't matter what they do to make money for the 2009 payment if they default in three weeks. Am I missing something?
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Old 06-10-2005, 09:50 AM   #3
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

I thought the payment was made already that this is the budget for this coming year.
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Old 06-10-2005, 10:10 AM   #4
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

I think they should sell a Saints Slot Machine and put it in casinos and various other places and use whatever revenue they can from it. Maybe the Saints could generate some good revenue from the License. Just look at how popular the wheel of fortune slot is. If you get three Fleur-de-lis you get a million, you get three bensons you owe 15 million.
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Old 06-10-2005, 10:20 AM   #5
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

If you get three Fleur-de-lis you get a million, you get three bensons you owe 15 million.
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Old 06-10-2005, 10:49 AM   #6
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

LOL that is good. Saints would make money for license of the machines but its Saints money, not states to give it to the Saints... that is the issue... state has to hand over to Benson a payment from the state.
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Old 06-10-2005, 01:36 PM   #7
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

... wonder how the NFL would feel about having a team receive gambling money...
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Old 06-10-2005, 02:18 PM   #8
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

TR, I believe the state will say that it's money from "gaming" rather than "gambling".
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Old 06-10-2005, 02:42 PM   #9
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RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Saints

Why not Saints slots? On second thought, they should really add craps tables in the Dome. Essentially, that's what the Saints' seasons are anyway - crap shoots. They'd have to change the dice though, so you could never hit it big. Then it would be Saints' Craps. Give your customers nothing but losing and keep asking for more of their money.
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Old 06-10-2005, 03:32 PM   #10
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Re: RE: Bill would direct money from slots at airport to Sai

Originally Posted by ScottyRo
TR, I believe the state will say that it's money from "gaming" rather than "gambling".
aahh, semantics.. it's a beautiful thing..

..but seriously, the State can obviously denominate the source of the money as they see fit, but the fact is that the money will come from slot machines. I am curious to know how the NFL feels about it, since it certainly could open the door to other such "gaming" possibilities in other places, and given that the NFL goes out of its way do dis-associate itself from any form of gambling...
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