During the daylong casino public hearing, the developers behind the proposed Schenectady casino announced several new partnerships with local businesses.
Rotterdam developer Galesi Group and Rush Street Gaming of Chicago announced agreements with The Mallozzi Group, Paul Mitchell The School Schenectady, Mad Jack Brewing Co. and Mohawk Golf Club.
“We have a fabric that we should all be proud of,” said Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy. He is set to speak in front of the Gaming Facility Location Board at 4:15 p.m.
The developers plan to work with the Schenectady businesses if the gaming board awards them a casino license next month. The Mallozzi Group would operate the banquet facility and other restaurants on site, while the Paul Mitchell School has plans to expand with a new salon.
“Opening another facility in the area will give our employees something to look forward to,” said Dr. Giuseppe Veglio, dean of the school. “It’ll be a nice place.”
To show their support, the Mallozzis made a special cake featuring the Rivers Casino and Resort at Mohawk Harbor. The cake included a rendering of the casino and hotel with “Schenectady is ready” written along the bottom.
Dozens of people attended the press conference, most of them wearing teal shirts that read, “We support Rivers Casino and Resort at Mohawk Harbor” on the front, and “Schenectady is ready” on the back.
The press conference came after several workers from Rush Street Gaming’s casinos in Philadelphia and Illinois spoke to the gaming board about their experience with poor working conditions and lack of benefits.
Glenn McClain, a security shift manager at Rush Street’s SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia, said he is saddened to hear their negative comments. He said SugarHouse is the best place he has ever worked.
“I have never seen a company do so much for their employees,” McClain said. “You’re not going to make everyone happy. But I get up every morning and cannot wait to get to work. You will see the positive benefits in Schenectady too.”
Casinos are also being pitched in Cobleskill, East Greenbush, Rensselaer and Schenectady. The public hearing will continue at the Holiday Inn on Wolf Road in Colonie until 8 p.m. today.