casino jobs

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The city council in Springfield, Massachusetts is poised to approve a casino ethics ordinance, but the city’s mayor has been silent so far on the issue.

The Springfield City Council is expected to give final approval at its next regular meeting to an ordinance that would put restrictions on public officials obtaining jobs at the new MGM casino being built in the city.  Supporters say it is intended to foster public trust in the municipal decision making surrounding the casino project.

MGM Springfield

MGM is planning a spring groundbreaking for the $800 million resort casino the Las Vegas-based entertainment giant is building in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts. Several important steps in the complex project will happen over the next few weeks.

Although construction cranes won’t appear in the sky for several months, workers and visitors in downtown Springfield will shortly notice changes as MGM prepares the 14.5 acre site for the project that promises to transform Springfield, economically and culturally, for decades to come.

WAMC composite image by Dave Lucas

As established casinos across the Northeast close their doors or administer cost-cutting measures, New York is just getting into the game.  And although it won’t host a casino if its own, Albany has become a key player.

The mantra has been "jobs and the economy," and New York's capital is crossing its fingers, hoping for a windfall should a casino go up in nearby Rensselaer County.

Long before final word from the gaming commission, the casino siting process has local governments and residents taking positions and forming alliances to woo or shoo casino developers.

WAMC composite photo by Dave Lucas

Casino developers have upped the ante in a bid to secure support from the city of Albany.

wikipedia

How likely are you to visit one of those new casinos when they open for business in New York?

Triin Q/Flickr

Public perception of casinos among upstate New Yorkers continues to evolve. While new gaming halls will be built, people have become more aware of the long-term positives and negatives they'll bring to surrounding areas. 

A Time Warner Cable News/Siena College Poll out Monday finds a majority of those polled favor building a Capitol Region casino.

WAMC

Clergy in western Massachusetts vow to spread an anti-casino message in advance of next Tuesday’s  voter referendum in Springfield on MGM Resorts’ $800 million project. The casino operator on Monday promoted  opportunities for minority and women owned businesses.

       Pastors representing the Council of Churches of Western Massachusetts announced plans at a Monday news conference to hold an anti-casino rally, stage  leaflet drops, publish a position paper and have people stand in front of dozens of churches this weekend holding signs urging a “no” vote next Tuesday.

A group working to defeat next month’s casino referendum in Springfield Massachusetts is holding a campaign kickoff event this Wednesday.  One of the scheduled speakers is Robert Steele. He is a former Congressman from Connecticut who witnessed the growth of casino gambling in Connecticut in the 1990s. He is the author of the novel, The Curse: Big-time Gambling’s Seduction of a Small New England Town.

WAMC

The lure of thousands of jobs in the fledgling Massachusetts gaming industry is powerful in the greater Springfield area, where unemployment remains high.  One of the companies competing for the lone casino license available in western Massachusetts is holding a career fair to show off the types of jobs being promised. 

Triin Q/Flickr

The two companies competing to build a resort casino in Springfield Massachusetts have affirmed local hiring goals.

   Penn National Gaming says  its goal is to hire 90 percent of its workforce from the city of Springfield.  MGM Resorts said 35  percent of its employees would be city residents, and 90 percent would live in the Greater Springfield area.  William Ward, held of the Hampden Regional Employment Board said the agency will work with whichever company gets the casino license

   A consortium of community colleges plans to offer casino job training courses..

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