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Slots parlor approved for Valley Forge

April 8, 2009 3:50:11 PM PDT
Pennsylvania gaming officials have awarded a slots license to the Valley Forge Convention Center. It will be about a year or so before slot machines come there, but the action Wednesday by gaming officials pretty much guarantees that they are on the way.

In an area that is already home to a giant mall, Valley Forge Park and a major highway, many feel the arrival of a slots parlor is an additional entertainment feature.

"It's going to give us a more diversified product for our visitors, for our whole hospitality industry," said Paul Decker of the Valley Forge Convention and Visitors Bureau.

The Valley Forge Convention Center plans to create a 500 slot machine parlor. Compared to other local casinos, it's small, but many welcome it.

"I think it's fantastic for this area. It'll bring in a lot of money, revenue, taxes, whatever. Eating, that type of thing," said Paul Petschect of King of Prussia.

There was some opposition during public hearings prior to licensing, but not a lot.

Chuck Egolf, however, is one person who takes issue with the project. He works in King of Prussia and sees potential problems.

"You could have some degeneration happening, bringing in bad people, crime, things of that nature," Egolf said, who added he is not opposed to gambling.

The Valley Forge Convention Center issued a statement saying, "We are extremely pleased with the board's decision to aware us a license and we are excited to create a first class gaming experience inside the Valley Forge Convention Center. Our team has the commitment and integrity to make this casino a success."

The casino is expected to generate $74 million per year. Half of that money will go to the state, while Montgomery County and Upper Merion Township will each get $1.4 million.

The casino is aslo expected to create 150 jobs.

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