Connecticut New Legislation Positive For MGM Resorts
The Connecticut House of Representatives recently approved legislation that would allow for new casino proposals to be submitted. The final vote saw it go down as 77 to 73 in favour of the bill and this narrow margin was enough for the bill to go through.
This bill will ask casino operators who are applying for a license to invest at least $500 million into the project and also requires them to create a minimum of 2,000 employment opportunities.
Applying for a casino license will not come cheap as the bill will require operators to shell out a one-time $50 million licensing fee. An additional $5 million fee is added for processing, but this will be refunded if the application is rejected.
The bill now heads to the Connecticut Senate for review and approval. The progress of this new bill is a big step forward for MGM Resorts International's attempt to build a facility in Bridgeport, Connecticut. However, there is still a long way ahead for the bill to be signed into approval and MGM Resorts will have to wait patiently to see how things turn out.
The Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes are not happy with the new bill as they had plans to set up a third casino in East-Windsor which would challenge MGM’s $950 million casino that is being developed in neighbouring Springfield, Massachusetts. The new legislation has drawn criticism from both tribes.
Connecticut Tribes Could Stop Revenue Sharing
Some gaming analysts claim that this new bill could stop the tribe’s from sharing their gaming revenue with the state. The tribe’s currently have the exclusive right to operate casinos in Connecticut and in exchange share a percentage of their gaming revenue with the state government. However, this new bill could endanger that compact.
Legislators appear to be willing to take the risk to offend both tribes and lose out on potential revenue in exchange for getting MGM into Connecticut. MGM has been happy with these efforts.
In a statement, MGM Senior Vice President Uri Clinton, said
We look forward to continuing this discussion and supporting the legislation as it continues to move through the legislative process. And we look forward to the Senate and governor concurring with the House, so that the competitive process can begin, companies including the Tribes can put forth their proposals, and the state can determine the deal that's best for Connecticut.