MGM Not Happy About Rival Connecticut Casino

by Kyle Miller

MGM Resorts InternationalMGM Resorts International is considering taking rival casino operators to court to stop a new casino from being constructed near the MGM Springfield complex.

When a new casino is created in the United States, a great deal of planning is involved. The host city and municipality has to be on board as well as other gaming venues nearby (if they exist) must be on board with the casino project. Approval must be given by the appropriate associations and groups, licensing obtained, etc. The process is multi-faceted. In many cases, a casino project will see opposition, especially when there is already a casino located nearby that may be affected.

MGM Resorts International has been working on a casino complex in Springfield which has a $950 million cost to construct. The casino may soon have competition in place as the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods Resorts Casino are considering creating a facility near the Springfield venue. MGM Resorts may be considering a court filing to try and stop their rivals from creating a gaming space near their own, which will be opening soon.

MGM Heading to Court

The lawyers for MGM went to the United States Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit in New York City this past Monday to try and stop the tribes from starting construction on their casinos. The company would like to keep the money involved in gambling stay in their venue instead of going to another owned by rival tribes.

Five communities within Connecticut are currently being considered by Foxwoods and the Mohegan Sun as a location for their new casino. These areas include East Windsor, South Windsor, Hartford, East Hartford and Windsor Locks. The site located in East Windsor would be located just 14 miles from the MGM Springfield casino, creating close quartered competition.

The areas under consideration seem to be willing to host a casino even though many think the tribes will not choose their town due to it being close to MGM Springfield. 1st selectman in East Windsor, Bob Maynard, says that he believes the tribes will not pick their area because it is so close to MGM Springfield. Maynard thanked the tribal company and MGM for their efforts but says they are not even considering the option since he does not feel the Mohegan-Mashantucket Pequot Company will choose their location.

Dr. Saud Anwar is a councilor of South Windsor, who is also open to a casino being placed in this town. An application was put in from South Windsor in October when the tribes had re-opened their request for the proposal process. Anwar feels that if a decision is to be made about the location of the casino then it should be completed by the people.

Delayed for Some Time

The tribal casino was supposed to actually open before MGM Springfield but since the tribal groups could not decide on a location, this has not come to pass. MGM Springfield should open by September in 2018. In September of this year, the tribal leaders for both tribes issued a letter with a report on the casino project which stated that the process was behind schedule.

By January, the lawmakers of the state should be back in session. It is believed that the tribes will have chosen a location for their venue by then. Lawmakers in the state will need to take time to create a new law that will approve a third casino. If MGM is filing suit, then the schedule for the tribal venue could be delayed even further. Only time will tell what will happen in this case and if the casino will ever be created.