Oct 25, 2001 11:22 PM

New York lawmakers early today approved a gambling expansion package that authorizes six new tribal casinos, slot machines at several race tracks and the entry of New York into the multistate Powerball lottery.

The state Senate also began the process of changing the state Constitution to allow casinos to be opened anywhere the governor, Legislature and local voters agree.

The expansion of gambling in New York, the largest of its kind ever, is expected to generate $1 billion in tax revenue per year. Governor George Pataki has estimated the loss associated with the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks could cost the state treasury $9 billion over two years.