Another ad reads: "With millions in new funding for schools and pensions at stake, tell the PGCB [Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board] you support Hollywood Casino Philadelphia."
Penn National spokeswoman Karen Bailey said Tuesday that she could not comment on the size of the ad buy or where the ads were running "other than we've placed the buy with various local media sources."
Five others are vying for the right to build the city's second casino, including gambling mogul Steve Wynn, local developers Bart Blatstein and Ken Goldenberg, and South Philadelphia businessman Joseph Procacci. A partnership of Cordish Cos. and Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment Inc., which owns Parx in Bensalem, is also in the hunt.
A decision awarding the second license is not expected for several months.
"Penn Hollywood's proposal sets itself apart from the rest of the applicants, and this is something we want the general public to know," Bailey said of the project, which generated both interest and controversy when it was first announced in November as questions arose over its legality.
Those issues have since been resolved by the gaming board.
"No other applicant is providing two-thirds of its cash flow from their proposed casinos to city schools and pension funds, and no other applicant can even match that," she said. "It is important that the general public know this."
Under the state's gambling law, Penn National can have only one-third equity in a Philadelphia casino since it owns Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course near Harrisburg.
Penn National has become one of the nation's largest gaming companies, known in the industry for its healthy balance sheet and aggressive growth strategy. It owns, manages, or has ownership interests in 26 facilities in 18 states and Ontario. The company also is pursuing a casino license in Maryland; it recently lost out on a bid for one in Springfield, Mass.
"The size and experience of our company is actually a major plus as it relates to the competition in Philadelphia," Bailey said. "We are a proven regional gaming operator. That's what we do for a living, it is our specialty, and we are the best in the business."
Contact Suzette Parmley at 215-854-2855, firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @SuzParmley.