Chairman Kevin Brown of the Mohegan Tribe, left, and Chairman Rodney Butler of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation at the National Congress of American Indians mid-year conference at Mohegan Sun on the Mohegan Reservation in Connecticut on June 13, 2017. Photo by Indianz.Com (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)

Tribes celebrate as governor in Connecticut signs new casino bill into law

The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe are now authorized to build a new gaming facility in Connecticut.

The tribes are planning a $400 million development in the town of East Windsor. The project was made possible by Senate Bill 957, which was signed into law by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy (D) on Tuesday.

“Today the Governor signed one of the most significant jobs bills passed by the General Assembly this legislative session,” Mashantucket Chairman Rodney Butler said in a press release. “With so much at stake, we can’t thank him and his partners in the legislature enough for standing with us in our fight to save jobs and revenue in Connecticut.”

“With a stroke of the pen, we are that much closer to turning our proposal for an entertainment and gaming facility in East Windsor into reality,” added Mohegan Chairman Kevin Brown. “We’re excited about the future, and tremendously thankful for the leadership of the Governor and the many legislators from both parties who rallied to protect jobs in our state that would otherwise have been lost.”

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

The tribes chose East Windsor in order to compete with a $950 million commercial facility that's going up across the border in Springfield, Massachusetts. The two sites are only about 13 miles apart.

MGM Resorts International, the non-Indian company behind the Springfield development, is promising a legal fight. The firm claims it was unfairly denied a chance to pursue a casino in Connecticut.

“Over the years, our state has maintained a longstanding partnership and compact with the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribal nations, who employ thousands of Connecticut residents at their casinos,” Governor Malloy said. “Make no mistake about it – the legislation I signed today is about jobs for the residents of Connecticut, and securing those jobs in our state.”

Read More on the Story:
Malloy Signs Bill Creating East Windsor Casino, Opponents Promise Court Fight (The Hartford Courant 6/27)
It's the law: Malloy signs 3rd-casino bill (The New London Day 6/27)
No surprise as Malloy signs bill allowing third casino (The Connecticut Mirror 6/27)
Mohegan tribe gets green light to build East Windsor casino (Calvin Ayre 6/28)
Connecticut governor signs contentious tribal legislation into law (Gambling Insider 6/28)

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

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