The Washington Post

Number of Maryland slots bidders drops

Bruce Quade stands behind Pat Quade as she points excitedly to the screen after winning during the grand opening of the Casino at Ocean Downs in Berlin, Md,. in January 2011. (AP Photo/The Daily Times, Amanda Rippen White)

As expected, one of two bids received on Friday for a site in downtown Baltimore was rejected by the panel because it did not include a required $22.5 million license fee.

One of three bids to operate a smaller location at Rocky Gap Lodge and Golf Resort in Western Maryland was also tossed. Commissioners said that proposal was missing several required pieces of information.

The action left the state with a sole bidder, a group affiliated with Caesars Entertainment Corp., for the Baltimore site, and two bidders for the lodge location in Allegany County.

One of the those is led by Nathan Landow, a Montgomery County-based developer and former chairman of the Maryland Democratic Party. The other lists its principals as Addy Entertainment and Lakes Maryland Development .

Donald C. Fry, the commission chairman, said his panel would spend the next several months scrutinized the proposals. None is guaranteed a license.

Three other slots sites authorized by Maryland voters in 2008 have operators. Two — in Cecil and Worcester counties — are open, while a third is under construction at Arundel Mills mall in Anne Arundel County.

The Baltimore site, where 3,750 machines are allowed, is envisioned as Maryland’s second largest casino. Only the Anne Arundel site, with 4,750 machines, would be larger.

Landow has proposed putting 500 machines at the Rocky Gap location; the other bidder has asked for 850.

John Wagner is a political reporter covering the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination.


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