Casino Continues to Invest in Community - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Casino Continues to Invest in Community

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Revenue from the slot machines and horse races at Presque Isle Downs is being put to good use.

   The benefits of the casino's cash are actually all around us here in Erie, a and there's more to come, with Friday's investment of another million dollars.

The Erie County Gaming Revenue Authority presented a check for about $1.2 million to the Erie Community Foundation.

The money will go to the lead asset endowment fund, which grants money to nine local organizations like the Erie Zoo, the Erie Playhouse, the art museum and the children's museum.

"They are the nine nonprofits that are contributing to tourism, to economic development, and really to quality of place," said Perry Wood, Executive Director of the ECGRA.

Wood said the monetary commitment to the community is all about "cultural vitality."

It's a strategy he said will help grow the economy here.

Since the construction of Presque Isle Downs and Casino in 2007, the casino has given many *more millions of dollars back to the community, in various ways.

"The Gaming Revenue Authority does that in a lot of ways," said ECF President Mike Batchelor. "It invested over 21 million dollars in our community... one of the ways they do it in perpetuity is through this fund at the Erie Community Foundation."

This investment comes after reports that the casino's revenue is down about 25 percent from this time last year. Still, it doesn't look like they're letting it affect their commitment to Erie.

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