A Conservative MPP slammed Caesars Windsor on Thursday, calling it "a sinkhole of a casino that's so deep it needs stimulus funds to stay afloat."

Speaking at Queen's Park, Peter Shurman condemned the provincial Liberal government and its finance minister, Dwight Duncan, for spending $430 million on a 2008 casino expansion that was budgeted at $400 million. Duncan is MPP for Windsor-Tecumseh, which does not include the casino.


Ontario Finance Minister Dwight Duncan, pictured here at Queen's Park, on Thursday rebuffed claims by MPP Peter Shurman that Caesars Windsor is 'a sinkhole.'

"You have Ontario taxpayers on the hook for at least another $212 million," he added, referring to public accounts that show Caesars will need government help to fund current operations and overcome a negative cash flow.

"I'd say that's quite a mess you have on your hands," Shurman said. "Here I thought the house wasn't supposed to lose."

The casino has "made a lot of money over the years" and encourages tourism, Duncan said after the debate.

He said it also provides much-needed jobs in Windsor, which has the highest unemployment rate among Canadian cities, at 14.9 per cent, according to Statistics Canada.

The casino is the second-largest employer in Windsor, with about 3,600 employees.