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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Hollywood Casino Tax Revenue for City of Aurora Plummets | Weisner and Kifowit Plot to Force It to Zero



Hollywood Casino in Aurora is dying.

And, if Mayor Tom Weisner and Party Girl Alderman Stephanie Kifowit have their way, it will be dead soon and you will get stuck with the consequences.

The latest numbers released show gaming tax revenue for the first six months of 2012 has plummeted along with attendance.

As gaming tax revenue dwindles to zero, Aurora taxpayers will get double-whacked because that same gaming tax revenue was used to guarantee bonds the city sought to fund wild spending by Weisner and the Aurora City Council.

Is Tom Weisner the Bernie Madoff of Aurora?

The opening of the new casino in Des Plaines, which is thriving, has had a negative impact on Aurora, but the situation will get far worse if Weisner and Kifowit have their way.

State Rep Lou Lang, a gambling expansion addict, with the blessing of the Illinois Political Mafia led by Michael and Lisa Madigan, wants to see four more casinos opened, including Chicago, which would effectively destroy Aurora and Hollywood Casino.

Lang says Kifowit, who is running for state rep against Pat Fee this November, has promised to vote with his gambling caucus.  Gambling interests, Madigan and Weisner have colluded to funnel sleazy cash to Kifowit.

Kifowit's disregard for the impact on Aurora and taxpayers is neither surprising nor new since she has been using gaming revenue and ward slush funds to attend parties and political events at taxpayer expense for years.

Weisner says he's not too concerned about gambling expansion in Chicago.  He's more concerned with "slot machines at racetracks."

"If Tom Weisner or Stephanie Kifowit gave a damn about Aurora taxpayers, they would tell Michael Madigan, Lisa Madigan, Lou Lang and the rest of the Illinois Political Mafia to shove it," said a source familiar with the discussion between them.

"This is about clout, power and campaign cash, not what is in the best interests of the taxpayers of Aurora.  Kifowit could care less and everyone knows she's been willing to say or do anything to get elected.  Weisner doesn't have the guts to stand up to the Madigans.  He's a political coward."

The only way to prevent gambling expansion is to make sure people like Pat Fee are elected instead and hope that Hollywood Casino can survive long enough until a new mayor replaces Weisner.

Hollywood Casino has not resulted in any change to downtown Aurora, even when the revenue was growing.  Most of that revenue was wasted on ward slush funds and other wild spending.

A source close to Hollywood Casino said "it's not fair to blame the casino for why Aurora's downtown was in bad shape before and continues to be so today.  It's like putting lipstick on a pig."  

"We have brought thousands of people and millions of dollars to the city, but there's been no economic development to match and the city has failed to make downtown attractive for private investment.  Weisner just keeps spending money with no results."

So, what happens if Weisner, Kifowit and the political mafia are successful in killing Hollywood Casino?

In addition to the fiscal crisis created by the bonds guaranteed with gaming tax revenue, Aurora taxpayers will be stuck with a black hole in the middle of its downtown in a prime spot along the river.

Hollywood Casino could shuts its doors, walk away and leave it all to rust since it owns the land and the city's only option would be to pour more money down the drain.

Alderman Rick Lawrence says "once again, the city has not looked out for the long-term best interests of taxpayers and planned ahead.  We have no plan."

City spokesgirl Carie Anne Ergo disagrees, saying they lowered our projections for tax revenue this year because they knew the Des Plaines casino was going to be opening.

And, other than watching the revenue collapse, what specific actions is the city taking to reverse the problem?

Ergo said, "the mayor is spending millions (of taxdollars) on a new park on the river."

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

all those years we had money coming in, we just wasted it.

Kifowit should resign from city council immediately.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the bearded leader wants the casino to fail. Once it's shuttered the city could spend millions of tax payer dollars to purchase the building, and give it to his buddy nayak

Anonymous said...

If Kifowit should resign, so should the rest of the council. The council is a team. If the council loses, they ALL lose. If it wins, they ALL win. So if the council has failed to make a plan, EVERY member of the council has failed. Lawrence is whining about there not being a plan. Fine, Rick. Where did you publish the plan YOU came up with? Nowhere, because YOU failed to plan just as much as everyone else. Let's fact it, the Aurora and ALL the "river boat casinos" in the Chicagoland area were doomed before they ever opened. As soon as they authorized those 10 licenses, EVERYONE knew darn well that eventually they'd authorize additional licenses, and that some would be closer to or actually in Chicago. And those would steal clientele away from the initial 10. The only casino in this area that's NOT seeing a big drop in revenue is Des Plaines. The others are all doomed.

Oh, as far as a hole in downtown, if the Casino shuts down declare it abandoned and take it by imminent domain. Part of the Vantrese development was supposed to be a convention center -- the Hollywood building could turn into that easily.

Anonymous said...

She will resign when she wins her race for House.

Anonymous said...

Another reason to move out of this most corrupt and bankrupt state....just keep voting the DEMO-COMMIE in and sooner or late you won't have any choice.

Anonymous said...

We already don't have much choice. The politicians from BOTH parties are equally corrupt and just out for themselves and anyone who gives them huge amounts of money.

Anonymous said...

That is why we are suppose to have non-partisan elections.

Anonymous said...

Get rid of the casino and the downtown will thrive again.

Anonymous said...

Get rid of the downtown and Aurora will thrive again. It has been a moneypit for 45 years.

Anonymous said...

Hard to blame the city council except for being patsies or wimps. The bearded leader has never accepted the council as the governing body of the municipality, and insists on ruling by executive order presented under the guise of "the voice of the people"

Anonymous said...

The casino was never going to do anything to revitalize the downtown. That was a charade from the beginning. Virtually everything the casino has done has been with the intent of getting people into the casino, blow all of their dough there and then go home. Those running the casino have never wanted people to spend money anywhere but in the casino.

Anonymous said...

Uh, 9:18 and 1:32, when did the downtown last thrive?

Anonymous said...

Kressky's Wolworth, Carsons, Sears, 3 movie theaters, Cooks Hi-fi, the Corn Crib, and the infamous Jet Burger. No one can say Aurora did not have a hey day.

Anonymous said...

This is 8:38. I never said Aurora didn't have its heyday. I just asked when it was. And I still don't know that. When were all the stores you listed there? 20 years ago? 50? 100?

Anonymous said...

I lived there for 45 years and NEVER saw it. It was slipping then and still is. I think it was shortly after WW II and BEFORE the great influx of you know who.

Al Kohollick said...

If you ever go to the US Post Office on Gabrielle (1/4 mile NW of Mall) you'll see this really great painting/mural of Downtown Aurora in it's heyday. It shows the Paramount playing some Elvis movie with Al's Cafe in the panorama. It's a good reflection of days gone by. As a kid I remember my Aunt taking us Downtown for a movie and a trip to the Popcorn shop down there. Every Friday my father would take us to the Old Second with that great mural of native Americans meeting up with the whites immigrating into the area. We used to also go the Braodway restaraunt for some Cheeseburger Deluxes on Fridays. Good memories.

Al Kohollick said...

Speaking of the Hollywood Casino......once they banned free drinks then what was the purpose of even being there ????

Anonymous said...

How about a story on Lawrence breaking into a house in his ward?

Anonymous said...

Wonder if Ofc. Obrien is told to arrest Ald. Lawrence

Anonymous said...

wonder if Lawrence had a plan when he broke into his neighbor's house.