SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. -- Dozens looked on as Saratoga Springs Mayor Scott Johnson laid out his vision for 2013 in his state of the city address.
Unlike many other cities, Saratoga Springs finds itself on sound financial footing, which the mayor now wants to build on – using its status as a tourist destination.
It's star attraction --the Saratoga Racecourse.
"We are well aware of the dependence of our city on the continued success of our historic track. Anything, anything that would serve as a threat to horse racing cannot be tolerated," said Johnson.
Saratoga also benefits from its racino, and now hopes to be selected by the state to expand that facility into a casino --that is, if the legislature approves the governor's plan. The county and city council have both already approved resolutions in support of one.
"We have a brand name of Saratoga that would draw anybody to a casino location and more importantly it's also jeopardizes right now what's in place with the revenue sharing and the racing industry," said Johnson.
Johnson also tackled the need for cost containment and urged that politics be taken out of government. Gun control even made it in, Johnson referencing the controversial gun show that was held at the city center over the weekend, but he declined to take a stand.
"Regardless of what side of the argument you are on each and every one of us must act with servility, respect and a recognition that gun control is an issue much larger than local government," said Johnson.
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