Seneca Nation releases statement on possible casino in Rochester

[anvplayer video=”5181724″ station=”998131″]

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — News10NBC is hearing from the Seneca Nation for the first time about the supposed agreement with the governor’s office to build a casino in the Rochester area.

In a statement emailed to News10NBC, Seneca Nation President Rickey Armstrong Sr. called efforts to derail the agreement “despicable.”

The Gov. Kathy Hochul administration quietly agreed to a new 20-year compact with the Seneca Nation. The state senate voted overwhelmingly in favor of it — but word leaked out that it included a possible casino in Rochester. 

That created a firestorm of opposition — leading the state assembly to delay its vote.

According to the Seneca Nation president, they’ve been negotiating this deal for nearly a year. The Senecas say the governor’s office was free to communicate with local officials throughout the process.

Again, our delegations claims it was not informed of any of this. 

Also, the Senecas say while they agreed not to negotiate through the press, they never entered into a non-disclosure agreement as the Hochul administration claimed.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie weighed-in on this on Twitter.

News10NBC also heard from State Senator Jeremy Cooney who says he stands by his vote against the compact renewal.

“The interests of the Greater Rochester region was never front and center. I’m pleased to learn the assembly will not hold a vote that will pre-authorize any decision related to the Seneca Nation’s gaming compact,” Cooney explains.