Ocean Downs Slots Get Spending Nod - NBC4 Washington

Ocean Downs Slots Get Spending Nod

$32.7 million approved for track near Ocean City



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    AP/Carolyn Kaster

    Maryland will be spending $32.7 million to grab a portion of vacationers money before they get to the beach.

    The Board of Public Works voted Wednesday to approve a contract for 750 slot machines outside of Ocean City, Md. 

    That’s not the full capacity at Ocean Downs. The racetrack is allowed to have up to 800 slot machines.  However, managers at Ocean Downs want to wait to see how popular the slots are before deciding to add more machines, according to the director of the Maryland State Lottery Agency.

    Gov. Martin O’Malley and Maryland Treasurer Nancy Kopp voted in favor of the slot machine contract. State Comptroller Peter Franchot voted against it.

    Ocean Downs 750 slots are set to be operational in December.  

    Franchot argued that it doesn’t make sense to spend millions on a project that has yet to bring in money.  

    The state’s allowed to have up to 15,000 slot machines at five locations, according to the terms of a constitutional amendment approved by voters.

    Maryland’s slot machines are expected to generate hundreds of millions of dollars annually, once they’re up and running.