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Legislators say SugarHouse missed its deadline

A group of Philadelphia state legislators yesterday asked the state to take back SugarHouse Casino's gambling license for a slots parlor on the city's waterfront because its backers have failed to build within the prescribed time.

State Rep. Michael O'Brien, whose district includes the SugarHouse property in Fishtown/Northern Liberties, and Sen.-elect Larry Farnese, who is to be sworn in next week to the First Senatorial District which also includes SugarHouse, objected to SugarHouse's request for a one-year extension on its license, issued Jan. 10, 2008.

They were joined by State Sen. Michael Stack and Reps. Bill Keller, John Taylor and Mike McGeehan.

SugarHouse has been blocked from building, first from City Council, then by the Nutter administration, which wants SugarHouse to move off the water. SugarHouse is still seeking approval from the Army Corps of Engineers.

The legislators argue that SugarHouse should forfeit its license for failing to build even a temporary location within a year of getting its license, as required by state law. The issue is likely to come before the Gaming Control Board for a hearing.

- Jeff Shields