I-Team 10: Senecas eyeing land in Henrietta

Posted at: 02/05/2014 5:47 PM
By: Brett Davidsen

The Seneca Nation of Indians is closing in on a site for a new casino. News10NBC has learned the Senecas have identified a plot of land in Henrietta and hope to buy it within a month.

Henrietta Town Supervisor Jack Moore says the Senecas said they were prepared to pay to build a casino in Henrietta. While Moore says he does not know the site that the Senecas have identified. He has been told it is in the commercial district in close proximity to I-390. It would be 20 to 30 acres and not in a residential neighborhood.

Moore says he first learned of the possible land purchase last week while touring existing Seneca casinos in Buffalo and Niagara Falls. He says they hope to purchase the land within 30 days. As of Wednesday, there have been no deed filings with the Henrietta Town Clerk and Moore says he has not seen any engineering plans.

There’s already organized opposition to the town hosting a casino by a group led by former Rochester Mayor Bill Johnson. Moore says while he’s not a personal fan of casinos, he will look at all the facts and present them to the people. He says even if the Seneca Nation does buy the land, it doesn’t mean a casino is guarantee in Henrietta.

Jack Moore, Henrietta Town Supervisor, said, "They said that they would purchase the land and they don't really want to be here if the community doesn't want them and they felt the land would be a good investment one way or the other, and that at a later date if we didn't want them, they'd sell the property.

News10NBC did try to contact the Seneca Nation of Indians for more information, but they did not return our calls.

Moore says he’s been told the Senecas would like to develop the site in phases, building the casino first, which would be sovereign property. Then any additional development around it would be done in conjunction with a partner and would be on the tax rolls.