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Our Community Voices


“I live in Uniondale, an underserved, minority community. The asthma rates in Uniondale among our youth are 17%, Hempstead’s asthma rate is 25%, 2-3x higher than the state average of 8%. NYSDEC has identified the minority communities of Uniondale, Hempstead, Roosevelt, New Cassel, Westbury, as disproportionately disadvantaged by air pollution and respiratory illnesses. NYSDEC reports that roads in proximity to the proposed casino currently handle 100,000-130,000 vehicles per day. If you put a casino there, traffic would increase by 20,000-30,000 cars a day. How would that mitigate our asthma rates? The environmental impacts will be devastating to our community. You’re not looking out for our communities, you’re looking out for the money.” 

- Pearl Jacobs, Nostrand Gardens Civic Association, Uniondale

"The Long Island Sierra Club has strong concerns about the environmental impacts. Nassau County and Las Vegas Sands (LVS) should have taken more time to do a thorough and independent environmental assessment. Fortunately, the NYS Supreme Court, on November 9th, made the same determination. The Sierra Club Long Island group agrees with the growing number of residents, as well as the courts, who are demanding that the process slow down and allow for an independent Environmental Review of the LVS proposal.  The Sierra Club supports the effort to preserve the balance of nature and responsible growth on Long Island." 

- Sierra Club Long Island

“Casinos attract bad behavior - it’s a feature! They call (Las Vegas) sin city for a reason. Colleges are places that lift people up and prepare them for a better life. Casinos are places that lift people up and shake them until all the money falls out.”

George Krug, Garden City Community Advocate 

“I am an emphatic NO! This is the biggest missed opportunity in our history. Generations in front of us are going to pay for our short sightedness. In Albany, they created a semiconductor center of excellence that created lots of investment and high paying jobs, it’s being replicated all over the country - and we get a casino? It’s like Biff from Back To The Future II - a few (Sands executives) get rich and the rest of us get low paying jobs. We spend so much on education, we have the best high schools in the country. We send hundreds and thousands of kids each year to the best universities in the country, and they don’t come back! Why? Because there are no industries of the future here. You think we’ll get our kids to come back and make Long Island great because we have a casino? Long Island used to make things that mattered. We don’t do anything that matters anymore. We need to reinvest in the jobs of tomorrow, not a casino.” 

Scott Livingston, Sands Point Community Advocate 

“Noise, light, particulate, and chemical pollution from the casino will disrupt the natural environment and quality of life for residents. Covering the ground with an excessive amount of impermeable surfaces will affect groundwater. Town of Hempstead is already exceeding water withdrawal limits, and drawing so much water will affect drinking water south of the casino. Large amounts of garbage will be generated at a time when most landfills must soon close. Where will the garbage go, how will it get there, and at what cost to the towns that accept it? Waste water volume will be high, it should be treated onsite to recharge groundwater, but will instead be transported off-site and sent to sea. Electric energy demand will be very high, this comes during a climate crisis, with 2023 being the hottest year on record. Land at the Hub wasn’t zoned for this use, nor should it be. The land is one of the few places where the vast Hempstead Plains of Long Island’s past still exist, as such it is a refuge for many animal and plant species and could be developed as a tourist attraction. Sierra Club agrees with the growing number of residents as well as the courts who are demanding that the process slow down and allow for an independent environmental review of the Sands proposal.” 

Steve Rolston, Sierra Club Long Island Board Member and Baldwin Community Advocate


“I feel this proposal is spitting on the graves of all of our veterans who gave their lives so we can enjoy the freedoms that we do everyday. Sloan Kettering, Hofstra, Nassau Community College surround the site. It is just the wrong location for a casino. We don’t need billions for a casino, we need billions to keep Nassau County Medical Center open - our priorities are not straight. This proposal is all about environmental racism.” 

Arthur Mackey Jr., Pastor, Mt. Sinai Baptist Churth, Roosevelt, New York


“FIrst, I’m disappointed that the flier sent to town residents was not transparent - it doesn’t even include the word “casino’. I’m part of the 1199 healthcare union, and to all of my construction union people, I’m for you also, but we can build something else - something that’s healthier for Nassau County. And I ask the 17 County Legislators that voted for this - How do I trust you to spend money wisely, because these same legislators agreed with Bruce Blakeman to take COVID money for golf tournaments, parties and concerts instead of using it where the constituents need it - for education, health care, mental health, our roads. I pray that this proposal doesn’t go through. This proposal is not helping us, this is only helping the Sands. And as far as Sands bringing in David Becham and Carli Lloyd - that’s not collaborating with the community,that’s bribery.” 

Julie Berger, East Meadow Community Advocate


“The idea of putting the second biggest casino in North America adjacent to Museum Row/Cradle of Aviation is offensive to me. I’m not anti-union, I’m supportive of economic development, but a casino will have a major impact on our social fabric. Sands estimates that 23,000 people a day will visit. About 2-4% of those people will be problem gamblers, and 20% of problem gamblers consider or attempt suicide each year. We already have a crisis in Nassau County with respect to behavioral health. Where are these people going to go for help? Casinos bring problem gambling, crime, and mental health crises. We all will bear the burden of these social costs.” 

Mike McKeever, Garden City Community Advocate


“Having a casino and crime around my children would be terrible. I invite you all to read a paper titled “Casinos, Crime, and Community Costs.” It shows there’s a lag effect in crime; each year a casino is operating, there’s an exponential increase in crime, including violent crime. Dollar amounts from tax revenue are minimal in comparison to multi-billion budgets. We have no real estimate of how much extra costs we will have. This casino could cost us much more than $50 million in additional services, and end up costing Nassau County much more than any expected tax revenue. Casinos make their money from gambling revenue - all the other trinkets surrounding the casino are there just to bring people in to gamble more money. I would implore you to look at how casinos make money - it’s not in food and beverage, it’s in gambling losses.” 

- Kyle Texter, Garden City Community Advocate


“Everyday I deal with traffic on Hempstead Turnpike. We are in a public transit desert. Uniondale, Hempstead, Westbury and New Cassel have been identified as communities overburdened by air pollution. We have very high rates of asthma. How does adding traffic, adding vehicles, adding more emissions fix that?” 

- Chris Jacobs, Uniondale Community Advocate


“The casino proposal is based on a lie - call it gambling, not gaming. “Gambling" is a word Sands has a hard time getting out. This project is wrong on a moral basis. You are taking the less fortunate and you are trying to raise revenues, just like someone pushing crack cocaine. And I fully understand how much work this could be for the unions, but you can’t ‘shine crap’. The people behind this project don’t want us to understand that their revenue will come from addicts. We will change our beautiful Nassau County into Atlantic City. If you value our neighborhoods, don’t go for the short term gain. We must work harder and smarter, it's your responsibility to look past the lie. This project is working against what is good for the people, it should be killed.” 

- Mike JacobWantagh Community Advocate


“I extend concern to the Town of Hempstead's choice  of Nelson & Pope to guide this process, a choice made almost immediately after the now-nullified lease was signed. It doesn’t appear that this contract was bid out to any other qualified entities. It was widely reported that in a contract for similar services with a town on the east end, Nelson & Pope agreed to “neutralize and discredit opposition as NIMBY.” Can you reassure us that the nature of this engagement is not the same? We want to trust that our local government is looking out for us, but when these things come to light, and when these issues clearly benefit those who wish to act against the will of the people, the ability to trust is challenged.” 

- Lynn KrugGarden City Community Advocate


“Casinos do not create wealth, they extract wealth. Sands is not coming here to make us rich, they’re coming here to get rich at our expense. They’re expected to take in $2 billion / year in gambling losses; this is money diverted away from our downtowns and into Sands coffers. Recently Sands representative Michael Levoff acknowledged Sands wouldn’t generate a lot of tourism and that the clientele would mainly be people in Nassau County. The casino industry is predatory and we are its target. Jeff Reynolds of Family and Children’s Association says it's OK to locate a casino between two colleges because the kids can gamble on phone anyway - well, he should be ashamed of himself. Anyone who works in addiction should know that the more available something is, the more addiction is created. We already have a crisis, why do we want to throw gasoline on that fire?” 

- Monica KielyGarden City Community Advocate

"That site should be redeveloped. It's begging to be redeveloped. It should have been redeveloped a while ago. But a casino is the exact wrong thing to be putting at that site. Nassau residents and taxpayers deserve a project at the HUB that is thoughtful and in their best interests. This proposal is lazy and self-serving. Not a good combination.

- Westbury Mayor Peter I. Cavallaro

“I have lived in Uniondale for 38 years. Three of my children have graduated from Uniondale High School. I have seen much growth in our community, most of it positive. What I don’t understand is how can our elected officials, with good heart, violate the trust and security of our community by trying to slip a casino into our neighborhood. They fully understand the implications of having this erected – increased crime, human trafficking, decreased home values, low paying jobs, increased traffic (which is already a nightmare) plus many other negative components. My dear elected officials, represent your constituents.”
- Rase Denny, Uniondale Community Advocate

"the presence of a Casino at the Nassau Coliseum/Nassau Hub Site would have a significant negative impact on the quality of life within the Village which would be dramatic, and the placing of a “round the clock,” 24/7 Casino in the heart of Nassau County would permanently impact the character of the surrounding communities"

"the serious security issues that surround Casinos are well known, including DWIs, prostitution, drugs, human sex trafficking, and compulsive gambling, and moreover, a severe negative impact on our Village roadways which are already overburdened with traffic"

"urges the Nassau County IDA to look towards developing appropriate uses of these properties which will enhance Garden City and our surrounding communities rather than negatively impact our collective quality of life."

- Excerpts of Resolution Passed by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Garden City

“I am a retired homeowner, living on a fixed income; I am a union member, and would love to see my union brothers and sisters working to build something more worthwhile at the HUB, like a medical research facility, to further create cures rather than a blighted complex that creates poverty, prostitution, alcoholism, crime, drugs and gambling addiction! This casino is of no benefit to me or my community. The tax increases alone for additional police protection will be heavy, and property values will surely decrease immeasurably. The negative impact this facility carries with it far outweighs any positive lies that The Sands is trying to sell us on. ”

- Deirdre Benoit, East Meadow Community Advocate

“The area surrounding the Nassau Hub is densely populated by a student population, and multiple studies demonstrate that students are particularly susceptible to gambling addiction. I refer to the over 32,000 combined students attending Hofstra University, Nassau Community College, and Kellenberg Memorial High School, which are all literally across the street from the Nassau Hub. If one ventures a few blocks farther, there are additional preschool, primary, and secondary schools, eventually reaching almost 60,000 students within a 6‐mile radius.”

- Dr. Susan Poser, President of Hofstra University


“We live in a high-density area, and the casino is proposed for a location that has approximately 40,000 students within walking distance. We don't need our students in the midst of gambling, drinking, drug use (endemic in those situations), a dramatic increase in traffic (already way too much as it is), and the other social ills that come with casino "life". The community in general will be badly affected by those social ills. Use the space for affordable housing and a green space, that's what we need!”
- Ellen Smiley, Levittown Community Advocate

“I am vehemently opposed to the Sands casino proposal. A casino would have an extremely negative effect on the quality of life in East Meadow, Uniondale, and surrounding towns. While the county may see financial returns, this will come with a price – crime, drug use, prostitution, and gambling addiction will increase. Two institutions of higher learning, Nassau Community College and Hofstra University will be within walking distance of the proposed casino. I would never send my child to any college that is located near any casino. In addition, a casino would exacerbate the traffic on already overburdened Hempstead Turnpike. I urge the Legislature to vote NO on this proposal.”
- Lorraine Banks Attias, East Meadow Community Advocate

“We recently relocated to Garden City for the schools, parks, and overall charm of the town. It would have certainly given us pause when purchasing a home if there was a large casino close by. I grew up in a small town in Nevada, where gambling is literally everywhere. I’ve seen first-hand how gambling can destroy lives and families. All the dues from my sister’s Girl Scout troop were gambled away by the troop leader’s husband. In nursing school, the ER nurses called weekend night shifts the “gun and knife club,” from the non-stop availability of gambling and alcohol. Please do not let a casino into our community. However attractive Sands might make this deal seem, the house always wins.”
- Jacqueline Ghosh, Garden City (formerly of Reno, Nevada) Community Advocate

“Voters sent politicians a mandate in November to address crime and this is their plan? Casinos are known to bring gun crime, drugs, prostitution, and human trafficking. I feel betrayed. Bottom line – you can’t be tough on crime and be pro-casino.”
- Karen Riordan, Manhasset Community Advocate

“The people thought that a casino at the Hub was a dumb idea 13 years ago. Nassau County would need to hire more police to tackle the increase in robbery, aggravated assaults, auto theft, burglary, larceny, rape, prostitution, murder, and drugs. Parents have enough trouble struggling to raise their children with the increase in drug addiction and related crimes in our communities. Do we want to now add gambling addiction to their worries?”
- Claudia Borecky, Bellmore-Merrick Community Leader

“It is outrageous for Nassau leaders to push a casino while simultaneously ignoring the housing crisis. In Baldwin, downtown has withered for more than two decades. Gentrification should be about housing, jobs, and economic redevelopment that improves the lives of Nassau residents, NOT adding crime, prostitution, traffic, and the ills of gambling adjacent to colleges and universities. We can do so much better - NO to the Nassau casino.”
- Paul Bua, Baldwin Community Advocate

“I am very concerned for the well-being of our children, the health of the neighboring communities, and the social fabric that is sewn very tightly in many Nassau towns. While a casino brings revenue, it comes with innumerable risks to all that we hold near and dear to us as community members and parents. Once this genie is out of the bottle, there will be no turning back. I plan to fight until the end to stop this potential cancer from taking hold and metastasizing throughout Long Island.”
- Anthony Ziniti, Garden City Community Advocate

“A casino in Nassau is bad news for our community in every way - we need resilient economic development, sustainable jobs,and affordable housing, not increased crime and addiction. Evidence on this is very clear. We should and can do better.” 

- Vasu Krishnamurthy, Manhasset Community Advocate

“Ahh, the lure of free money! Isn't that what people who frequent casinos think they are getting? Isn't that what enticed Nassau County Executive Blakeman when he heard the Sands pitch? In both cases, there are significant costs and repercussions that exceed the promises of free money. When New York state was instituting OTBs in local neighborhoods, they promised free-flowing money that would go to education, and our school taxes would go down. Yeah right – local politicians got jobs, the operating costs skyrocketed, and very little money, if any, goes to education. A casino is not a quick fix with easy money; long-term, it’s a devastating move for the county and ALL its residents.” 

- Patricia Chester, Garden City Community Advocate

“Building a casino at the Nassau Coliseum site is not a good idea. Per a CNN report: “the impact of casinos on local property values is ‘unambiguously’ negative according to the National Association of Realtors. Casinos do not revive local economies. They act as parasites upon them.” Also nowadays, people don’t need casinos to gamble, they can access it on their phone or computer. Lastly, right across the street is Hofstra University and Nassau Community College. Do you really want young students tempted to kill time at a casino in between classes?” 

- Steve Layne, Merrick Community Advocate

“Too many treasured institutions in Nassau County will be adversely impacted by the presence of a casino - Hofstra University, Kellenberg Memorial High School, Mitchell Field athletic facilities, Sloan Kettering, Eisenhower Park, LI Children’s Museum, the Cradle of Aviation - to name a few. And the impact on traffic, water, and our environment is unequivocally negative. A FIRM NO”. 

- Nancy Driscoll, Garden City Community Advocate

“Building a casino in the middle of Nassau County, one of the most densely populated areas of the country, is a cynical, lazy ploy by our government to push a regressive tax on the most vulnerable among us so they can claim, through smoke and mirrors, a new, albeit short-lived, revenue stream, without acknowledging or quantifying the tremendous negative impacts, including increases in crime, exacerbation of traffic and environmental damage, decrease in property values, and inevitable increase in gambling addictions and other social ills. Their support for the proposed casino reveals their contempt for us, their voters, who they are now hoping to fool into believing this casino idea is anything other than a ruse to line their campaign accounts and deal lucrative contracts to their allies.” 

- Allison O’Brien Silva, Manhasset Community Advocate

“Where will the casino revenue come from? The majority of it will come from local residents, and the vast majority of the earnings will go to the Las Vegas Sands Corporation. Gambling is an entertainment expense people are willing to spend money on, however, I feel the negatives outweigh any entertainment value. Illegal trades typically develop around casinos, and rates of drinking and driving increase. Communities with casinos spend more money on police and other services, and robberies, assaults, prostitution, and gambling addiction rates most certainly increase. A casino is a short-term fix to what needs a much better longer-term vision. I believe politicians are only interested in the short-term benefits of building a casino.” 

- George Evans, Garden City Community Advocate

Nassau County Community College students loudly boo County Executive Bruce Blakeman when he mentions the proposed casino at their 2023 commencement - video

We believe in the power of communities to come together and fight for what is right!

Our Mission

Our Mission

Our mission is to prevent the development of a casino at Nassau Coliseum and to preserve the safety, character, and well-being of our communities.

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Our Vision

Our vision is a future where communities have a say in the development of their neighborhoods and can preserve their unique character and identity.

Join the fight!

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