Billionare from Miami Ken Griffin Opposes Transfering Operating Licenses to Miami Beach Casinos

Billionare from Miami Ken Griffin Opposes Transfering Operating Licenses to Miami Beach Casinos

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The Miami casinos are going through a lot these days – and the most recent issue was Jeff Soffer’s aim to withdraw the license issued to Hallandale Beach and grant it to Fontainebleau Miami Beach resort.

A letter against casinos:

Ken Griffin, a billionaire hedge funder, disagrees with this and opposes the bill that will allow Fontainebleau resort to open. Griffin is one of the biggest donors of the Republican party and a real estate investor from Florida. He was among the first ones to explore the wealth of South Florida when it started to thrive after 2020. After that, he moved Citadel and Citadel Securities, which used to be in Chicago, to Miami, and that decision has proven successful.

Griffin wrote an open letter to Miami Herald and called it “Casinos are a bad bet for Florida”. He stated that the casinos are a threat to the prosperity of the state and that it’s proven that opening casinos leads to higher crime rates, a decrease in property values, and increased gambling addiction. Griffin pointed to Senate Bill 1054 and House Bill 1127, bills that could allow the licensees to transfer the license to another property within a 30-mile radius.

For a few years now, Soffer has been trying to transfer the license from his casino in Hallandale Beach, Big Easy Casino located at 831 North Federal Highway, to Fontainebleau, located at 4441 Collins Avenue in Miami Beach, which is also owned by Soffer’s company, Fontainebleau Development

To help his cause, he donated $300.000 to the Republican Party of Florida and became involved in various political actions. He also made other donations, including $15.000 for Principled Moral Conservatism.

History of betting in Miami Beach:

Even though Griffin doesn’t mention Soffer in his letter, it is pretty obvious what he is talking about. He mentioned the overall negative impact of casinos in the area and said that the bills were opposed to the constitutional amendment from 2018, which gave voters a right to determine if the casino would be expanded or not.

As The Real Deal reports, he wrote: “It’s a legislative gimmick created by lobbyists and special interest groups that blatantly disregards our voice as voters and puts Florida’s momentum at risk.”

He also compared the potential opening of the casino in Miami Beach to “willingly dumping toxic waste into the Everglades.”

Back in 2017, the voters decided to prohibit gambling in Miami Beach, and city officials agreed with that decision, so casinos have been banned since then.

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