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Schnader Successfully Represents the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in an Appeal of their Decision to Revoke the Foxwoods Gaming License

11/10/2011

On November 10, 2011, in a 6-1 decision, a Commonwealth Court en banc panel affirmed the December 2010 decision of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to revoke the Foxwoods casino license for the long-stalled South Philadelphia casino location. A team of Schnader attorneys, led by James Eisenhower, and including Bruce Merenstein, Elizabeth Nicolas, Katrin Rowan, Carl Solano and Paul Titus, successfully represented the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in this case.

 

The Gaming Control Board revoked the Foxwoods’ license in December 2010 after a series of delays and financial setbacks encountered by the casino investors, Philadelphia Entertainment and Development Partners, L.P. (PEDP), and after lengthy proceedings by the Gaming Control Board held to evaluate the progress of development. When it became clear that PEDP would be unable to fulfill its obligation under the license that was issued, the Board revoked it. PEDP subsequently appealed this decision.

 

In finding in favor of the Gaming Control Board, the court held that the Board properly applied the Gaming Act’s financial fitness standards, writing that “the Gaming Act, together with the Board's Regulations, PEDP’s Suitability Report, and PEDP’s Statement of Conditions …placed PEDP on notice of its obligation of financial suitability as both a slot machine license applicant, and a slot machine licensee.” The court further held that the standards were not unconstitutionally vague, writing “[w]hat the Board required of PEDP relative to its financial fitness and suitability was not vague. It is clear that PEDP’s difficulty meeting the Board's guidelines was not due to its lack of clarity regarding the Board's requirements, but to its ability to timely deliver.” Finally, the court held that the Board had afforded PEDP due process and properly revoked its license during the summary judgment stage of the proceedings.