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College Township lawyer says no dice on getting out of hosting a casino

A rendering of the entryway to the casino SC Gaming OpCo LLC wants to build in the Nittany Mall in State College.
SCGaming OpCo LLC
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A rendering of the entryway to the casino SC Gaming OpCo LLC wants to build in the former Macy's in the Nittany Mall in State College.

Opponents to a proposed casino in the Nittany Mall in Centre County continue to call on the host township to try to stop it, but the township’s lawyer says that’s not an option.

In 2017, under Pennsylvania law, municipalities had the choice to opt out of being hosts to mini-casinos. College Township did not do that — pointing to the potential economic benefits.

Now, the township’s attorney says the chance to opt out has expired. A letter from attorney Louis Glantz that’s part of the council’s Thursday meeting agenda packet also notes that the township already approved the preliminary final land development plan for the casino a developer wants to build in the mall.

Township manager Adam Brumbaugh said council has been getting a lot of correspondence about the casino and whether the township can opt out.

“As a result of all of that, staff had inquired of the township solicitor to provide an opinion to that effect," Brumbaugh said. "And that opinion, along with generating a draft of frequently asked questions — a series of questions that seem to be recurring themes — are going to be discussed and reviewed by council on Thursday evening.”

The group working to stop the casino notes that more than 200 messages opposing the casino have been sent to the township in the past two weeks alone.

The proposed casino is waiting for a public hearing and vote by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.

A screen shot of a letter dated Aug. 26, 2022, from College Township attorney Louis Glantz to the township.
College Township
In this Aug. 26, 2022, letter to College Township, attorney Louis Glantz says the township's right to opt out of being home to a casino has expired.

Anne Danahy is a reporter at WPSU. She was a reporter for nearly 12 years at the Centre Daily Times in State College, Pennsylvania, where she earned a number of awards for her coverage of issues including the impact of natural gas development on communities.
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