2013-08-08 / Local & State

Rival Investors Sue To Thwart Second Philly Casino



HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Minority investors in Philadelphia’s Sugarhouse Casino are trying to stop Pennsylvania gambling regulators from licensing a second casino in the city.

The minority partnership group, led by Philadelphia lawyer Richard Sprague and auto dealer Robert Potamkin, argued that the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board does not have the authority to award a license that it previously revoked from the failed Foxwoods casino project in Philadelphia in 2010.

The lawsuit was filed Monday in Commonwealth Court.

Sugarhouse’s majority partners, including billionaire Chicago real estate investor Neil Bluhm, did not join the lawsuit. The board, which regulates the state’s 12 casinos, said it plans to ask a judge to dismiss the lawsuit and that it believes it has the power to reissue the license.

The lawsuit said that the majority group that owns and operates the casino had “trouble reaching a consensus’’ about whether to join the lawsuit because of how it would be perceived by Philadelphia officials, whose city stands to benefit from the casino’s receipts.

A spokesman for Sugarhouse declined to comment, other than to say the company expects the lawsuit will have no impact on its operations or its planned expansion.

The board is reviewing six applications for the second Philadelphia license and expects to make a decision early next year.

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