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Tioga Downs announces expansion in push for casino bid

Matt Martin

Tioga Downs, the Southern Tier horse racing and gaming club, has announced plans to expand by purchasing the Tioga Country Club. It’s just the latest push to strengthen their bid for a full casino license from the state.

Tioga Downs will only purchase the club if it receives the full casino gaming license from the state. Developers at Tioga Downs are hoping the planned expansion will strengthen their application for a casino license.

There are currently three other applicants competing for the license in the Southern Tier region. Two in the Binghamton area and another further to the north in Tyre.

State Sen. Tom O’Mara fully supports bringing a casino to Tioga Downs. He says partnering with the county club will only add to the laundry list of attractions in the region.

“To make it part of a day or two out of a package of going around to the Finger Lakes, going to the wineries, maybe Corning Museum of Glass," O'Mara said. "We’ve got a lot of arts and entertainment in the area. And this I think is a critical component and a great partner in that.”

If Tioga Downs gets the license and purchases the country club they would build a new clubhouse, including a restaurant and pro shop.

Applications to be considered for one of the four gaming licenses are due by June 30. The commission is expected to make their decision in the fall.