The state's gambling commission has voted to allow failed applicants for casino licenses in eastern or western Massachusetts the opportunity to compete for the sole license in southeastern Massachusetts.
The motion was approved on Thursday by the panel, which had earlier voted to open the southeast region to commercial casino bids. The Mashpee Wampanaog tribe previously enjoyed exclusivity in the region while it pursued regulatory approvals for a proposed resort casino in Taunton.
The casino project proposed in downtown Springfield Massachusetts by MGM Resorts International has cleared another hurdle. The city council unanimously endorsed the project Friday night and authorized a city wide voter referendum.
The vote by the Springfield City Council came after about 90 minutes of debate during a special meeting Friday night and was greeted by cheers in the packed council chambers.
The city council in Springfield Massachusetts will hold a special meeting on Friday to debate a proposed casino development deal with MGM Resorts.
City Council President James Ferrera said there is no need to rush a vote on the host community agreement that was signed last week by Mayor Domenic Sarno and a top MGM official. Ferrera, on Monday, invoked a procedural rule to postpone debate on the agreement because he said he has questions about it.
The ante has been upped in the competition for a resort casino development in western Massachusetts.
The company that owns land in Palmer off the Massachusetts Turnpike where Mohegan Sun hopes to build a resort casino announced plans Monday for a commercial development with stores, restaurants and a small hotel adjacent to the site of the proposed casino. Leon Dragone, manager of Northeast Reality Associates said this would be built well before the state makes a decision on awarding a casino license in western Massachusetts.
City councilors in Springfield Massachusetts appear ready to act quickly on the proposed casino development agreement with MGM Resorts International. The casino operator wants the citywide voter referendum to take place in mid-July. Casino opponents have little time to mount an effective campaign.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders tried to jumpstart negotiations over siting several new gambling casinos in New York. But they also conceded that the plans might be delayed for another year.
Legislative leaders and Governor Cuomo met for the first time together in over a month, and they focused on an issue they had originally hoped to settle in the budget, the expansion of gambling in New York.
The mayor of Springfield Massachusetts and a top official with MGM Resorts International signed a casino development deal on Wednesday. The signing ceremony marks the start of a campaign to convince the city’s voters to ratify the agreement.
Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno has chosen MGM Resorts International to develop an $800 million casino project in the city’s downtown. It puts MGM one step closer to competing for the lone casino license available in western Massachusett.
Springfield would receive more than $25 million annually in taxes and other payments from MGM Resorts if it is successful in building the resort casino, under the terms of a comprehensive development agreement announced Tuesday by Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno.