Twin River in Deal to Buy Newport Grand

 Twitter: @markcurtisABC6 

It may be something of a gamble, but the company that owns Twin River casino in Lincoln, is now buying the Newport Grand slot parlor on Aquidneck Island.

Newport Grand was twice rejected for casino table games in the last two elections, and at a news conference the new owner pledged to run it, only as a slot parlor.

“We will not be seeking a question in the City of Newport in 2016. It’s pretty obvious there that the people of Newport have spoken,” said John Taylor, CEO at Twin River.

Last fall protesters let their opinions be known, that a full casino did not fit Newport‘s historic image.

ABC6 Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis said, “Gaming is a big deal for the State of Rhode island, between here at Twin River, Newport Grand and the Lottery – it is the third leading source of revenue for the state.”

In fact, Rhode Island made almost 400 million dollars from gaming revenue last year.

The problem is, one slot parlor is already under construction in neighboring Massachusetts, and three full casinos will follow.

So, after losing a casino vote in Newport, Joe Paolino thought it best to sell Newport Grand to Twin River.

“It wasn’t successful so now I think that somebody who understands that business, and who’s been successful at it, should be in there. And Twin River‘s the right company to do that,” said real estate developer and former Providence Mayor Joe Paolino.

“A strong Newport Grand is good for the State of Rhode Island.”

Right now Newport Grand employs about 175 people, and generates 26 million dollar a year in state revenue.