Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy (D) addresses the mid-year session of the National Congress of American Indians at Mohegan Sun on the Mohegan Reservation on June 13, 2017. Photo: NCAI

Tribes in Connecticut waiting on governor to sign bill for new casino

The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe are still waiting on Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy (D) to sign a new casino bill into law amid threats of more litigation.

Senate Bill 957 authorizes the tribes to build a new facility in the city of East Windsor. They chose the site because it's only about 13 miles from Springfield, Massachusetts, where a $950 million commercial facility is under construction.

The operator of that casino is MGM Resorts International, a non-Indian company that spent $1.68 million in lobbying fees so far this year in hopes of stopping the tribes, CT News Junkie reported. The firm also financed an unsuccessful lawsuit that paved the way for the new development.

But if Malloy signs the casino bill, MGM could head back to court. That might affect the tribes' plans to debut their project in the fall of 2018, around the same time the facility in Springfield is due to open.

The New England Casino Race: Tribal and commercial gaming facilities in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island

The two tribes have been operating casinos on their reservations since the 1990s. Massachusetts is new to the game -- so far only one slot machine parlor is in operation.

Plainridge Park Casino appears to be doing well, according to the Associated Press. The facility generated $157 million in its second year of operation, up from $154 million in the first year, the AP said.

The tribes plan to offer slot machines as well as table games in East Windsor.

Read More on the Story:
State Poised To Launch Biggest Expansion Of Gambling In Decades, But Some See Trouble Ahead (The Hartford Courant 6/23)
Malloy Sides With Tribes In Debate Over One-Time Fee For East Windsor Casino (The Hartford Courant 6/22)
Future MGM lawsuit to stop CT casino has better chance to succeed (WWLP 6/22)
Springfield Mayor Dismisses Proposed Connecticut Casino As 'Glorified Slots Parlor' (WAMC 6/22)
Revenues rise slightly in Plainridge Park's second full year (AP 6/22)

2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Decision:
MGM Resorts International v. Malloy (June 20, 2017)

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