Capital Region attorney Peter Moschetti Jr. pledged to bring legal experience and a pragmatic approach to oversight of the expansion of casino gambling in upstate as the first of two Legislature-appointed members of the state Gaming Commission.
The founding member of the firm of Anderson, Moschetti & Taffany was unanimously confirmed by the Senate on Tuesday and joins five other members of the commission appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. As part of the commission, Moschetti will have a say in regulating all aspects of the state’s gaming activities, including the upcoming development of four casinos in three designated regions upstate.
“I look forward to joining my colleagues on the commission to ensure that the integrity and transparency of the racing and gaming industries in New York is upheld,” he said following his confirmation.
Moschetti joins Commission Chairman Mark Gearan and members John Crotty, John Poklemba, Barry Sample and Todd Snyder. A seventh member is expected to be nominated by state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver sometime during the session this spring.
Moschetti was nominated for the post by Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos. On Tuesday, he spoke before the Senate’s Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee of the need to impose tight regulations on the expansion of casino gambling upstate.
“Certainly there’s a great deal of opportunity for revenue,” he told members of the committee. “There’s also many pitfalls that come with [casinos].”
Moschetti recalled the development of video slot machines at the Saratoga Casino and Raceway, and how the operation was properly developed to allay community apprehension. He said the Gaming Commission now has an important and difficult task ahead with the development of facilities with live table games.
“I think the stronger your laws and regulations are, the better it will be,” he told the committee. “It’s a difficult task and I don’t know if it’s the panacea everyone thinks it, but hopefully it will work out well.”
Moschetti brings nearly three decades of legal experience to the commission in both state and federal courts. Formerly a downstate assistant prosecutor, his recent practice of law has focused on personal-injury and wrongful-death cases.
Moschetti graduated with honors from Albany Law School in 1984 and has lectured at his alma mater for continuing legal education in the areas of civil and criminal law. The Saratoga Springs resident owns and rides horses with his family but is not involved in racing.