Yonkers, NY – Mayor Philip A. Amicone, chairman of the Yonkers Industrial Development Agency (IDA), announced that the IDA board approved a resolution to move forward with a public hearing and to negotiate an economic development incentive package for a $40 million expansion of the Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway. If finalized, the package will support Yonkers Raceway’s efforts to remain competitive while generating new economic benefits for the city.
The expansion would create a new east wing of approximately 60,000 square feet (sf) including 30,000 sf of new gaming space, 20,000 sf of new food and beverage space and 10,000 sf of office and storage space, as well as mechanical rooms. The new wing will have 400 new gaming tables and 350 Video Lottery Terminal (VLT) machines that will be relocated from existing space.
“Empire City at Yonkers Raceway has already generated tremendous economic benefits to this city both in jobs and in tax revenue. This expansion will add to that equation – creating new jobs while protecting an important local business that is facing a direct competitive threat from Aqueduct just a few miles away,” said Mayor Amicone. “We look forward to reaching a fair agreement that allows this project to move forward.”
If a final agreement is reached, the expansion protects the raceway’s competitiveness by adding gaming tables and amenities. The expansion would create 100 new permanent jobs and 179 new temporary construction jobs while protecting 1000 existing permanent jobs.
Inducements from the IDA could include a sales and use tax exemption for materials and equipment used in construction and a long-term extension of the current property tax agreement.
“Making smart economic investments that help Yonkers’ businesses compete and thrive is part of the basic mission of the Yonkers IDA. Our goal is to put together a responsible incentive deal that allows Empire City Casino to continue to thrive while protecting and expanding the economic benefits this city already gets from the facility,” said Ellen Lynch, president and CEO of the Yonkers IDA.
The IDA Board also voted to move forward with a public hearing and to negotiate an economic development incentive package for a $1.7 million expansion of Kimber Manufacturing – a long-time Yonkers manufacturer of “1911 firearms.” 1911 Firearms are intended for law enforcement, military and competitive uses.
The inducements, if approved, could include a real property tax agreement, as well as a sales and use tax exemption. The expansion would allow Kimber to expand to its third facility in Yonkers at 1120 Saw Mill River Road and eventually double its manufacturing capacity. The incentive would also help the company maintain 395 full-time jobs at an average salary of $47,000/year and add 82 new permanent jobs and 30 temporary construction jobs.
The hearings for Yonkers Raceway and Kimber Manufacturing are scheduled for June 16. After the public hearings, both projects must come back to the Yonkers IDA Board for final approval.
About Yonkers IDA: Chaired by Yonkers Mayor Philip Amicone, Yonkers IDA is a public benefit corporation that provides a wide range of business development incentives to companies that choose to locate or expand in Yonkers.