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Casino kingpin calls BS – during committee meeting – on gambling critics

by Dara Kam | November 16th, 2011

Colin Au, president of Malaysian-based gambling giant Genting America, made big promises to lawmakers during a Senate Regulated Industries workshop on Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff’s proposal designed to allow up to three casinos in South Florida.

Three casinos in Miami-Dade County could ring up $1.7 billion a year for the state’s cash-strapped coffers, Au said. The high-end resorts would also create 100,000 jobs in a state where the unemployment rate is hovering near the double-digits, Au pledged. Not just any jobs, either, the Malaysian native announced.

“They are good-paying jobs. They work in air-conditioned facilities. They wear uniforms,” Au stated.

Au’s stats raised a few eyebrows, but not as many as his frank dismissal of critics’ contention that the jobs would be snapped up by out-of-state workers already employed at casinos in Atlantic City or Las Vegas.

“That’s bullsh–, OK?” Au said, drawing gasps from the standing-room-only committee room.

Au’s use of the profanity is nearly unheard of in the staid halls of the Capitol, but elicited no rebuke from chairman Dennis Jones, R-Seminole, as other chairmen have done in similar circumstances.

And neither Au’s second use of the off-color term when he pooh-poohed allegations that his proposed 5,000-room gambling resort in Miami, where his company has already purchased property, would put other hotels and restaurants out of business.

“That’s bullsh– again,” the heavily-accented Au insisted. “It does not take people’s lunch. It creates lunch, dinner plus breakfast for everyone.”

After the meeting, Bogdanoff said Au oversold her proposal, possibly damaging its chances of passing. His use of the blue language may have been a cultural difference, Bogdanoff guessed.

“You can do that privately. We all kind of sometimes use language that’s inappropriate but I don’t do it, (a) in a public forum or (b) in a committee meeting,” Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, said. “I just want him to tone the rhetoric down.”

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10 Responses to “Casino kingpin calls BS – during committee meeting – on gambling critics”

  1. pbc concerned Says:

    we are a state that thrives on tourism. I can’t imagine why people in government would block a type of business and entertainment that could boost our economy here! They built a grand place in a nowhere desert and now it is an amazing hot spot!!!
    We have beaches and many other types of tourist hot spots. If they would open Florida up to Casinos and require proper security this state would grow like no other state!!
    I unerstand the idea that people will spend their rent money and will be broke. this could cause some form of social issue that is ugly. People already do this on Lotto!! I know people that gamble away all there money on the hope they will get rich on the lottery. the difference is the Lottery doesn’t create real jobs that pay!!!
    Freedom doesn’t mean your free until we doen’t like what your doing with your finances!! get out of the way of our freedoms and let us enjoy LIFE!!!

  2. Mags Says:

    This is ridiculous. Any company or industry that will create 100k jobs in south florida needs to be taken into consideration. Even if Genting’s plan is optimistic – let them try. This is their business and what they are proposing is what they hope to achieve and based on a study of Singapore which is a logical comparison. We need these jobs!

  3. SHR Says:

    I’ll tell you what is BS, this Governor and these sorry elected legislators that pretty much kill every real job creator proposal in Florida. Whether its renewable energy, gambling developers in miami…


  4. Downtown Danny Says:

    This state has needed casinos for 40 years. Imagine the jobs engine we would have if casinos had been here. I know busboys in Atlantic City that make more than 80% of the restaurant & hotel workers in this state, and they have full free health insurance, a 100% paid pension plan and a 100% paid severance plan. Waiters in AC & Vegas live middle class lives, own homes and put their kids thru college – here waiters live in $600 a month rentals and scrap by their whole lives without anything.
    Those who put their own personal “morals” ahead of creating good high paying full benefit jobs for our state don’t deserve to be in public office.

  5. Jack Says:

    Hey politicians this guy can say Bull**** all he wants if he’s willing to bring 100K jobs and billions of investment into my state. Focus on creating jobs and keeping my taxes down. Worry about the big stuff

  6. RJ Says:

    Sounds like a language-barrier issue. As long as there is no Jobs-barrier issue I’m fine.

  7. Mariner Says:

    Dear Pious Politicians

    We can handle the language. You get us these jobs

    The Unwashed Masses

  8. Jeremy N Says:

    Oversold the proposal? You people are NUTS!!!!! Heaven forbid a businessman who comes to Florida with a plan that will create thousands of jobs and invest billion$ in our state who is confident in his plan. These people should be encouraged and welcomed as partners, not doubted and criticized as beggars. Whats wrong with a company that believes in its ability and is committed to its plan? Dont screw this up

  9. panhandle Says:

    Wow someone who tells it like it is in Tallahassee? I’m shocked I tell you just shocked!

  10. Burgess Says:

    Who cares if Au said ‘bullxxxx’, really… Tallahassee is BULLXXXX! What part of we need jobs today do they not understand? Genting are committed to spending billions and Florida will get jobs, improved infrastructure and tax revenues. Let’s get this moving!

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