Twin River

In what would be a serious threat to Rhode Island’s state gambling revenue stream, Fall  River is eyeing yet another attempt to enter the casino market.

Mayor William Flanagan has scheduled an announcement for Tuesday on a deal for a $750 million casino in the seen-better-days onetime textile center in  southeastern Massachusetts that practically straddles the R.I. border, according to several Massachusetts media outlets, including WBUR.

Partnering with Fall River would be Foxwoods, the Connecticut-based tribal gambling empire.

The Rhode Island Supreme Court has upheld a Superior Court finding that the Narragansett Indian tribe has standing to sue the state over the addition of table games at Twin River and Newport Grand. Yet it remains unclear if the tribe's suit will move forward.

Under state law, the Narragansett tribe gets about one fifth of one percent of all net revenue from video lottery terminals at Twin River in Lincoln. That’s up to a maximum of $10 million a year.

Flo Jonic / RIPR

State Police have made their first arrest at Twin River Casino connected to the Las-Vegas style table games that opened there last month.

46 year old Steven Sabitoni of Lincoln has been charged with larceny for stealing $250 worth of chips from a blackjack table.

Detectives verified the theft by viewing casino surveillance footage.

Twin River has permanently banned Sabitoni from the casino premises.

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More bad news for Rhode Island gambling venues: Connecticut’s Mohegan Sun casino has announced a major retail expansion at its flagship property in Uncasville, Conn. The new retail destination will have 200,000 square feet of entertainment, shopping and dining. The new facility will be located next to the Winter Garage. Construction is slated to begin later and the space is scheduled to open in early 2015.

Table Games Open at Twin River Casino

Jun 20, 2013

Wednesday was a pivotal day in the history of Twin River.  With the introduction of table games, the former dog racing park – turned – slots parlor is now the state’s first full fledged casino.

Wielding pruning shears, Governor Lincoln Chafee and other dignitaries cut a giant red ribbon, signaling the start of table games at Twin River.

Earlier, the Governor betrayed his bias for another type of gambling when he listed the games now available at Twin River.

Flo Jonic / RIPR

Rhode Island expects to pocket six-and-a-half million dollars just from table games in the next fiscal year.

Fred Carstensen  is an economist at the University of Connecticut who has been studying casino gambling in that state. He said as casinos open in Massachusetts, Rhode Island should expect to get a smaller piece of the casino pie.

"It’s not a bottomless pit, you’re shifting money away from other activities and frankly it doesn’t really create value," said Cartensen.

John Bender / RIPR

Casino gambling just like in Las Vegas is scheduled to begin Wednesday at Twin River in Lincoln.

The one-time dog track has become the first venue ever in Rhode Island to offer table games thanks to voters, who approved the change to stave off competition from new casinos proposed for Massachusetts.

Gambling is a major part of the state budget, and to better understand how games like blackjack and roulette will affect the budget, Rhode Island Public Radio's Elisabeth Harrison sat down with Paul Dion from the State Department of Revenue.

There’s an old chestnut in banking: If you owe the bank $10,000, the bank owns you. If you owe the bank $100 million, you own the bank.

That’s pretty much what has happened in Rhode Island state government’s quest to regulate the state-sponsored gambling emporiums at Newport Grand and at Twin River (aka Twin Rivahs in Vo Dilundese) in Lincoln.

If you know somebody in need of a job, you might want to steer them to Twin River.  The slot parlor is going to full casino gambling  this summer and Twin River spokeswoman Patti Doyle says they’re still looking to hire at least 300 workers, mostly dealers. She describes the qualities they’re looking for.

The Newport Grand slot machine parlor lost its attempt to expand with Las Vegas-style table games in last November’s election. Now Newport Grand is seeking a break from state gaming taxes while the gambling emporium decides its next move.

Under legislation introduced in the Rhode Island General Assembly, Newport Grand is looking to decrease the share of gambling revenues it send to the state by about $3 million over the next two years, according to Diane Hurley, owner of Newport Grand.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Feb 7, 2013
Snowfall in Hope, RI
Susan Greenhalgh

Winter Storm Nemo is heading our way.  Making sure veterans have what they need as they return to civilian life.  These stories and more on the RIPR Morning News Podcast. 

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Aubin looks to increase security at Twin River

Jan 28, 2013

Updates to Twin River are to be discussed by the Joint Committee on State Lottery today, as the establishment readies itself for the introduction of table games.

In 2012 Rhode Island voted to allow gambling in the state, but table games, such as black-jack and poker, will only be allowed in Lincoln.

Director of the Rhode Island Lottery Gerald Aubin says the addition of table games will require increased security.

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Once again, it was a busy year in the Ocean State, and Rhode Island Public Radio’s counting down the top ten news stories of 2012. At number 2 is the split vote to expand gambling at one video slot parlor, but not at another.

In November, Rhode Islanders voted to expand gambling to include casino-style games at Twin River. The vote received overwhelming support in Twin River’s host community of Lincoln.