While the Massachusetts Gaming Commission does not expect to award the first casino license in the state until a year from now, plans are underway to start training people to fill the thousands of jobs the new gaming industry promises.
BOSTON (AP) — A Native American tribe hoping to develop a resort casino in southeastern Massachusetts has received a favorable opinion on their land bid from the federal government.
The Mashpee Wampanoag tribe announced Tuesday that the Office of Indian Gaming, in a preliminary advisory opinion, said the land where the casino has been proposed in Taunton qualifies as an "initial reservation," as does land in Mashpee, where the tribe is headquartered.
The mayor of Springfield Massachusetts has announced a delay in negotiations over building a resort casino downtown. The city will take more time to review written proposals from two casino operators competing for the city’s support.
Officials with the Eastern States Exposition have struck a deal with Hard Rock International to pursue a resort casino development on the fairgrounds in West Springfield. According to informed sources the project on the 175 acre property would include a hotel, retail stores and an outdoor concert venue. Brian Griffin, vice chair of the town council, believes the project can overcome what he predicts will be initial resistance on the part of townspeople.
City Councilor James Ferrera, who assured the council a place at the center of the casino debate last year by creating a casino site committee, was re-elected by his colleagues to a rare second consecutive one year term as council president. Ferrera predicted the casino issue would top the council’s agenda in 2013.
A report to the gaming commission last year said there will be ten thousand jobs in the casino industry in Massachusetts. William Messner, president of Holyoke Community College said if there is not a trained pool of local people the casino companies will hire from out of state.