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Gambling interests pumped $92M into campaign

In the end, the bigger spenders were the big winner.

The gambling companies and other interests backing the voter referendum authorizing expanded gambling in Maryland ponied up a grand total of $50 million, versus $42 million by the opponents, and the measure passed Tuesday, 52 percent to 48 percent.

Voters authorized licensing a sixth gambling venue, in Prince George's County, and OK’d table games such as poker and roulette, plus 24-hour operations, at all slots parlors in the state.

Penn National Gaming of Wyomissing, Pa., the sole donor to the committee opposing the issue, contributed $41.5 million by the end of the campaign, according to state records. Penn — which owns Hollywood Casino Perryville, Rosecroft Raceway in Fort Washington and Hollywood Casino at Charles Town (W.Va.) Races — opposed the measure.

Among supporters, three new committees joined For Maryland Jobs & Schools, the main committee, and Maryland First Now, the committee started by Wayne Curry, president of NAI Michael Cos. and former Prince George's County executive. The new committees were Forward Maryland, with treasurer Isaac Salazar; Unite Here International, with treasurer John Dana Wise; and Republican Leaders Referendum Guide, with Michelle Corkadel as treasurer.

The Peterson Cos., the Fairfax, Va., owner of National Harbor, contributed a total of $4.2 million to support the issue. MGM Resorts International of Las Vegas, which contributed $40.8 million, wants to build an $800 million casino at National Harbor in Oxon Hill.

CBAC Gaming, the group backed by Caesars Entertainment of Las Vegas that has won a license to operate a Harrah's slots parlor in Baltimore, contributed $4.9 million to the pro-casino campaign. The Bozzuto Group, a Greenbelt developer that is building apartments in National Harbor, contributed $10,000. A group called W. Hackerman Special contributed $100,000.

Prince George's to host financial literacy seminar

Prince George's County Councilman Will Campos (D-Dist. 2) will host a financial literacy seminar for small businesses from 2:30 to 4 p.m. Friday at the Langley Park Community Center, 1500 Merrimac Drive, Hyattsville.

Mirinda Jackson, compliance manager with the county’s minority business enterprise program, and Dave Parikh of Business Wise Consultant also are scheduled to participate.

Registration: Jackson, 301-952-4919 or mdjackson1@co.pg.md.us.

Latino business owners are encouraged to attend and Spanish translation will be available, according to organzers.

Housing Initiative Partnership selects new executive director

The Housing Initiative Partnership in Hyattsville has selected Maryann Dillon to be executive director of the partnership and its sister organization, HIP Services. Dillon takes over from Mosi Harrington, the partnership's founder and leader for its 24-year operating history.

Dillon, formerly director of real estate development at the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County, has 25 years of experience in affordable housing and community development, according to a statement from the nonprofit.

Grants and funder workshop in Bowie Nov. 16

The Foundation Center of New York, a source of philanthropy information, will host a workshop, “How to Research Funders and Grants,” from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Nov. 16, at the Prince George's Community Federal Credit Union, 15201 Hall Road, Bowie.

The workshop is for nonprofits and minority-owned businesses.

Cost: $35; members $15. Registration: pfccoalition.org.

Names & Notes items may be mailed to Lindsey Robbins, The Gazette, 13501 Virginia Manor Road, Laurel, MD 20707; faxed to 240-473-7501; or emailed to lrobbins@gazette.net.