SALAMANCA – For the first time in 35 years, a sitting New York Governor has personally visited the city of Salamanca. On Thursday, Governor Andrew Cuomo made a joint appearance with Seneca Nation of Indians President Barry Snyder, Sr. at the Salamanca City Central School District to announce that the Seneca Nation has presented the state with $350,000,000 in casino revenue payments.
The payment had been withheld over a four-year dispute about gaming at the Hamburg, Batavia and Finger Lakes racetracks. With the agreement, the state has granted the Senecas an exclusive Western New York zone to operate its casinos and in exchange, the state racetracks will be able to keep their existing video lottery terminals. Of the $350,000,000, $34,500,000 will be reinvested into the Salamanca city government and school district, and Cattaraugus County.
Both Governor Cuomo and President Snyder had made a similar announcement earlier in the day in Niagara Falls. The Senecas operate three casinos in the region – one each in Salamanca, Niagara Falls and Buffalo.