Councillor McMahon on Casinos in the GTA

Councillor McMahon feels that allowing a casino to be built in the GTA is socially corrosive and therefore an inadvisable way to generate revenue for the city.

Although she admits we need to be creative in our approach to revenue generation, she feels that casinos harm the social fabric of communities and families, negatively affect local businesses and prey on the impulses of the addicted and vulnerable. Councillor McMahon is much more supportive of the idea of charging road tolls and parking levies, for instance,  to close the financial gaps at the city level.

Therefore Councillor McMahon will not be supporting any proposal to put a casino in our city.

9 Comments

  1. Ian Quinn says:

    Good evening,

    I hope all is well; I can agree casino’s are corrosive but free casino shuttle’s run from every mall in Toronto to Rama daily giving other municipalities this essential tax revenue and still leaving property owners in Toronto to pay for the fall out. A casino conference centre in the Port lands or at Woodbine racetrack with revenue dedicated to transit makes sense.

    We cannot pay any more I curently pay over $10,000 in property taxes, fees for water, garbage, and parking on my street and the thought of a road toll, and further levies is tough to handle.

    Can the city not charge a toll for entering Toronto during peak times similar to London as tolls on the Gardener and Don Valley will simply drive more people onto Kingston Road, and Queen Street.

    Warmest regards,

  2. Sarah Fine says:

    Thank you for your strong and principled stand against casinos. From my experience as a social worker and personal observations of the damage gambling can do to families, I agree with your analysis of the cost and am happy to see my city councilor standing up for family.

  3. Scott Bullock says:

    MMM,

    Gambling was introduced by a very progressive Bob Rae. The current OLG proposal is being advanced by a very progressive Liberal government. One of the Casino proposals is being backed by OMERS, a government pension plan. Lot’s of good paying union jobs are at stake.

    Why not insist that every penny generated is ear-marked for public transit. As an environmentailist, certainly this must have some merit.

    As a Beacher, my property taxes continue to skyrocket, far beyond my ablity to pay…based on a five year forecast, I will be taxed out of my home.

    I hope you will re-consider your position and do right by overwhelmed tax payers and use this new revenue to support public transit.

  4. Alexandra Bednar says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more on the Casino issue … you just have to look at some of the places where the Canadian casinos have gone to see what sad places they are. The casino lobby has said they will contribute to counselling services for gambling addicts but the one thing they will never do is put people back where they were before they lost their house, car, life savings, etc.

    Also studies have shown that the casino goers will generally not be taking public transit so it will mean further gridlock if it goes downtown. It will also hurt local business as the casinos are designed to keep people in the complex long enough for them to spend maximum dollars gambling.

    If a casino is built in downtown Toronto I, for one, will not ever spend a nickel there.

  5. Terry Fagan says:

    My concern regarding a Toronto Casino is that 23 people will be deciding for 2.3 million people. The Provincial Liberals removed the need for a referendum in 2012, with Premier Wynn present, depriving each Toronto voter from having a say. Allow each one of us to vote and we could all look forward to being wined and dined as many politicians have and are being.

    I appreciate your understanding of the down sides of casino operation and fully support you.

  6. Ursula Rattey says:

    No casino PLEASE. This city has enough problems already. We do not need to attract more.

    • Edward Birnbaum says:

      Hi Ms. Rattery,
      Thank you for writing to us.
      Councillor McMahon agrees that Casinos are damaging to a city’s finances and social cohesion. Furthermore, the revenues that a casino will purportedly bring continue to dwindle.
      Councillor McMahon will continue to vote in opposition to a casino in Toronto.

      Thank you,

      Edward Birnbaum
      Executive Assistant
      Office of Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon
      Ward 32, Beaches-East York
      416.338.5229
      Toronto City Hall
      100 Queen Street West, Suite B28
      Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
      http://www.councillormcmahon.com/

  7. Colin Foster says:

    I’m all for projects that net money for the city, but it seems like no one is doing (what should be) some pretty obvious math. Every dollar the city claims it will ‘win’ by putting in a casino is just a small cut of the dollars that will be removed from Toronto.

    As is well documented, a casino’s primary objective is to manipulate patrons into parting with significantly more money than they intended to when they walked in. They are expert at it. Patrons will lose; That’s what those projected big wins for Toronto mean.

    When patrons lose, they will not have lost some some magical new money they didn’t have before the casino arrived. They’ll be losing the money they would have spent in the city’s restaurants, theatres, and music halls; money they would have spent improving the homes, furthering their education and otherwise being invested in our communities.

    A casino is just a highly inefficient tax on every Toronto citizen. The dollars that used to support our vibrant and diversified cityscape will be drained away into the hands of a private company who will send their profits out of the city and give Toronto a fraction of what would have been spent here anyway.

    We would all be better off if Toronto just raised taxes by the amount the casino is projected to net the city. Heck, we’d even be better off if we were taxed the amount the casino would *gross* because at least that money would get spent here!

    For the love of math, please do not relent on your opposition to the casino.

    • Edward Birnbaum says:

      Hi Mr. Foster,
      Thank you for your email.
      Councillor McMahon agrees that Casinos are damaging to a city’s finances and social cohesion. Furthermore, the revenues that a casino will purportedly bring continue to dwindle.
      Councillor McMahon will continue to vote in opposition to a casino in Toronto.

      Thank you,

      Edward Birnbaum
      Executive Assistant
      Office of Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon
      Ward 32, Beaches-East York
      416.338.5229
      Toronto City Hall
      100 Queen Street West, Suite B28
      Toronto, ON M5H 2N2
      http://www.councillormcmahon.com/

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