Lawsuit aims to prevent proposed Islandia casino

Opponents of a planned casino in Islandia have filed a lawsuit to keep it from being built on the grounds of an existing hotel.

Opponents of a planned casino in Islandia have filed a lawsuit to keep it from being built on the grounds of an existing hotel.

Opponents of a planned casino in Islandia have filed a lawsuit to keep it from being built on the grounds of an existing hotel. (9/14/16)

ISLANDIA - Opponents of a planned casino in Islandia have filed a lawsuit to keep it from being built on the grounds of an existing hotel.

The suit names the village of Islandia and Delaware North, the company developing the casino. Residents gathered Wednesday night to discuss it.

Last month, the village board approved a special permit allowing 1,000 video lottery terminals at what is now a Marriott Hotel. The plan would see the casino open by the end of the year.

Attorney Paul Sabatino, who filed the lawsuit, says the village zoning law "explicitly prohibits gaming" at the Marriott site.

Suffolk Off-Track Betting officials say the casino would bring in about 6,000 every day and create local jobs. Supporters also say the revenue would bring tax relief to residents.

Some residents against the proposal say they do not want a gambling facility anywhere near their homes.

In a statement, Delaware North did not directly address the lawsuit, but said: "We think the hotel in Islandia is a great location and we plan to work with the village and nearby residents on any concerns with the facility's aesthetics and operations going forward."

Islandia village officials say they have not yet seen the lawsuit and therefore could not comment. The president and CEO of Suffolk OTB declined to comment.

An earlier plan to build the casino in Medford was withdrawn because of opposition from residents and officials in the Town of Brookhaven.

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