Penn National Gaming, Inc. (PENN: Nasdaq) announced today that on June 30, it formally filed with the Ohio Lottery Commission for Video Lottery Sales Agent Licenses for its Ohio racetracks, and with the Ohio State Racing Commission for permission to relocate the racetracks from Columbus and Toledo to Austintown in Mahoning County and Dayton, respectively.
Penn National previously announced its intention, conditioned on state approval, to relocate Beulah Park in Columbus to Austintown and Raceway Park in Toledo to Dayton, and to construct new $125 million racetrack and video lottery terminal (VLT) facilities at the new locations (consistent with applicable law).
“Filing for VLT licenses and formally requesting that the Racing Commission approve our relocation plans is another major step forward for these two significant economic development projects,” said Tim Wilmott, President and COO of Penn National Gaming. “We are hopeful we can receive state approval in a timely manner, allowing us to break ground this fall on the new facilities in the Mahoning Valley and in Dayton.”
Under terms of a memorandum of understanding with the office of Ohio Governor John Kasich, Penn National has agreed to pay, over time, a $75 million relocation fee for each racetrack, in addition to the $50 million VLT license fee per track.In addition to up to 1,500 VLTs per facility, both of the new properties will feature restaurants, bars and other amenities. Each is expected to create approximately 1,000 direct and indirect jobs, and to generate approximately 1,000 construction jobs. Penn National has previously indicated that it will continue to operate Beulah Park in the Columbus suburb of Grove City and Raceway Park in Toledo until the expected opening date of the new facilities sometime in 2014. The Company is working cooperatively with local officials in Grove City and Toledo to determine the best possible use of the land once the racetracks cease operations.