(San Antonio) Thursday morning Pinnacle Entertainment Corporation, based out of Las Vegas, announced a series of transactions which joins them with Joe Straus’ family business interests. The corporation acquired much of Retama Park for $22.8 million dollars in cash and debt acquisition. Pinnacle Entertainment Corporation commented on the risky business decision stating, “We believe Retama Park provides significant strategic value for our shareholders given the potential approval of gaming entertainment centers at Texas pari-mutuel facilities*”.
Matt Beebe commented on the expanded partnership saying, “Many voters I have talked to are worried about Joe Straus’ conflict of interest given his deep family ties with Retama. This recent partnership should concern San Antonio residents even more. WOAI’s story on the partnership made it clear that Retama Park ‘needs some form of pari-mutuel betting in order to thrive*’. These Vegas casino owners have bet big on Straus’ intention to legalize casino gambling in Texas.”
Beebe continued, “District 121 voters don’t want a State Representative whose special interest masters now include Vegas casino bosses who need him to deliver for their bets to pay off.”
A recent article in the San Antonio Express News* claimed the debt Retama Park currently holds consists of 7.2 million in senior bonds, and a 1.6 million dollar note. The Retama Development Corp. (RDC) also owes $87 million in subordinate bonds, plus more than $150 million in unpaid interest. These debts will only be paid if the casino gambling lobby is able to legalize casino gambling, and in-turn produce positive cash flow.
“The Texas gambling industry has a failing business model and are now seeking to change the rules after the bets have already been placed. As a small business owner I understand that when your business is failing you don’t go to the government looking for bailouts in the form of changes to the Texas constitution. When the Vegas casino bosses cash their chips, it will be hard working Texas taxpayers left holding the bag.” Beebe concluded.
Sources* 1. http://investors.pnkinc.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=667615 2. http://radio.woai.com/cc-common/news/sections/newsarticle.html?feed=119078&article=10080632 3. http://www.mysanantonio.com/default/article/Still-no-deal-at-Retama-3445456.php