Artist's rendering of a proposed casino to be jointly operated by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe in East Windsor, Connecticut. Image: Teeton Architects / CT Jobs Matter

Tribes falling behind on schedule for controversial casino in Connecticut

The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and the Mohegan Tribe remain committed to a new casino in Connecticut despite falling behind on their schedule.

The tribes had hoped to break ground in December and open the jointly operated facility before the end of 2018. Though work has yet to begin, a spokesperson told WTIC Radio that details will be coming soon.

“We’re putting in the time and care necessary for a successful venture,” spokesperson Andrew Doba told WTIC. “This means a lot to both tribes and we want to get it right.”

Part of the reason for the delay can be traced to the Trump administration. The Bureau of Indian Affairs has failed to publish notice of the tribes' updated gaming agreements in the Federal Register, according to a lawsuit pending in federal court.

The tribes do not need federal approval to open the new casino. But publication of the agreements would protect their existing relationship with the state of Connecticut, officials have said.

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

The tribes are hoping to secure summary judgment in the case soon, The New London Day reported. A decision, though, appears to be at least a couple of months away, based on a schedule agreed to by the parties and approved by a federal judge on January 8.

The lawsuit could also be slowed by the addition of MGM Resorts International to the dispute. The non-Indian firm is seeking to intervene over the objections of the tribes.

MGM has great interest in the outcome because the firm is opening a $950 million commercial casino in neighboring Massachusetts before the end of the year. The site is only about 13 miles from the tribes' site in Connecticut.

Read More on the Story:
Tribes: East Windsor Casino Plans Moving Forward (WTIC Radio January 17, 2018)
Mohegan Sun kept $50 million in slots revenue in December (The New London Day January 16, 2018)
Parties to third casino suit file joint motion to modify court schedule (The New London Day January 8, 2018)
Tribes Still Not Ready To Commit To East Windsor Casino Construction Timeline (The Hartford Courant January 6, 2018)

Join the Conversation

Related Stories
Tribes turn tables on non-Indian company intent on derailing new gaming facility (December 7, 2018)
Tribes sue Trump administration for dragging feet on revised gaming agreements (November 30, 2017)
Tribes report mixed slot machine returns as they press Trump team on casino (November 16, 2017)
Tribes hit roadblocks as Trump team refuses to sanction new gaming agreements (November 10, 2017)
Lawmakers join tribes in pressing Trump team for firm response on new casino (November 8, 2017)
Tribes seek stronger response from Trump team on new Connecticut casino (November 1, 2017)
Tribes spar with Obama's former Interior secretary over new casino in Connecticut (October 25, 2017)
Mohegan Tribe believes Trump team accepted new casino despite murky response (September 27, 2017)
Connecticut tribes can't get clear answer from Trump team on bid for new casino (Setpember 19, 2017)
Connecticut tribes see another win as court refuses to rehear casino challenge (September 11, 2017)
Eastern Pequot Tribal Nation questions legality of new casino in Connecticut (August 17, 2017)
Tribes report mixed results in slot machine revenues at casinos in Connecticut (August 15, 2017)
Tribes in Connecticut await federal approval of revised gaming agreements (August 1, 2017)
Connecticut tribes sign new gaming agreements to account for new casino (July 20, 2017)
Tribes celebrate as governor in Connecticut signs new casino bill into law (June 28, 2017)
Tribes in Connecticut waiting on governor to sign bill for new casino (June 23, 2017)
Connecticut tribes welcome court decision favoring new casino law (June 22, 2017)
Connecticut tribes heap praise on senior Trump administration official (June 14, 2017)