Fact Check: Lago and Job Creation

When it comes to job creation, the promises of Lago is far-reaching and confusing at best. At worst, Lago will likely redistribute jobs from other areas, with little to no actual increase in jobs for New York State. But let’s look at the “facts”

THE CLAIM: 1,800 Permanent Jobs. Is this True?

THE ANSWER: According to Lago’s own documents, it is FALSE.

Screenshot of Lagofacts.com from Sept 28, 2015

Lago’s website (see image), makes a bold claim that it will create “over 1,800 permanent jobs.” (source)

The MSG and Maxim Economic Impact Reports, paid for by the Lago developers, predicts just 1600 permanent jobs, only 954 of which would be in Seneca County. (source)

In fact Lago’s Casino Application to the NYS Gaming Commission, actually gives “a guarantee of 1,000 new jobs during operations” (source 1 and source 2). That’s hardly 1,800.

Why does Lago keep saying 1800 jobs?

Lago is purposefully misleading the public in this regard. They’re not only using blue-sky predictions of how many will be hired at Lago (again, they only guarantee 1,000) but they’re also taking credit for any and all potential “indirect” jobs that may occur in New York as a result of a new casino.

If you allow Lago to consider using any potential job increases across the state in the “jobs added” column, then to be truthful, they also have to consider the “jobs lost” column. That will not look nearly as advantageous. By Lago’s own estimates, the casino will cannibalize at least 50% of its revenue from other businesses, and other estimates predict closer to 70%.

A third-party study looked at this very question and predicts:

As a result of reduced employment and purchases by the four existing gaming facilities that will be its direct competitors, the proposed Lago Casino & Resort will actually generate only a net of 114 new direct jobs, a net decline of 2 indirect jobs and a net decline of 57 induced jobs, with a corresponding loss of employee earnings in these other sectors of the regional economy. That’s a net benefit of only 55 jobs.

Looking at this from an unbiased perspective, and to be truthful, Lago should be using the 1,000 number, or telling the full story – which is that it will lead to somewhere between:

…at most 114 more employed, 59 lost jobs, so a net of only 55.

The Lago Developers and PR people should be ashamed of their misleading statements.

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