Downtown Miami Developer May Bet On Casinos

The developer of a nine block mega-project may pursue casino gambling as an added component to what promises to transform a derelict portion of downtown Miami.

"The developer of a massive project in downtown Miami is quietly considering a campaign to amend Florida's Constitution to allow Las Vegas-style casinos in the city and open the door for a similar casino at Miami Beach's famed Fontainebleau Hotel.

A political committee financed by Marc Roberts, who along with Art Falcone is developing the 25-acre Miami Worldcenter, has spent more than $850,000, hired 13 petition gathering companies and has lawyers working to write an initiative for possible placement on the 2010 ballot.

A key selling point: taxes on the new casinos would go to benefit all Florida schools, just like the successful slots initiative before it.

According to drafts of the petition language obtained by The Miami Herald, the committee is considering three amendments, two of which are designed to appeal to the existing parimutuel companies in Miami-Dade and Broward by asking voters to give them the same games as the Seminole Tribe and lower their tax rate."

Full Story: Developer wants casinos in Miami Beach, downtown Miami


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