Massachusetts Gaming Commission receives 11 applications - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Massachusetts Gaming Commission receives 11 applications

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Eleven gaming applicants interested in building a casino in Massachusetts have submitted applications and their $400,000 fee to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.

The following are the applicants who will move forward in the state's casino process:

  • MGM Springfield
  • Penn National Gaming, Inc.
  • Plainridge Racecourse
  • Hard Rock MA
  • Wynn, LLC
  • Mohegan Sun
  • Sterling Suffolk Racecourse
  • Raynham Park
  • Mass Gaming Entertainment, LLC
  • PPE Casino Resorts
  • Crossroads Massachusetts, LLC

Four of those applicants: Hard Rock, MGM, Penn National Gaming and Mohegan Sun are vying to build a casino in Western Mass. Two of the applicants Mass Gaming and Entertainment LLC and PPE Casino Resorts did not specify the region or license type they are applying for.

Gaming commissioners held a press conference in Boston Tuesday afternoon formally accepting the applications, four from Western Mass.

"We are thrilled to have 11 gaming applicants, thrilled to have robust competition," said Commission Chairman Stephen Crosby.

The competition is only heating up here in Western Mass.

For several weeks now Penn National and MGM, looking to build in Springfield, have had their applications and fees into the commission.

Last week Hard Rock, vying for a casino in West Springfield applied, and Monday Mohegan Sun in Palmer sent in their application.

But two other Western Mass cities are on the outside looking in and they're hoping to get an extension.

"We have received some last minute correspondence literally within the last hour," Crosby said.

Tuesday Western Massachusetts Development Company, formerly Paper City Development who has been wanting to build in Holyoke, filed a petition for an extension.

"If the people of Holyoke say they want the ability to vote for a casino then the mayor would acknowledge the wishes of the people and do it, he's an elected official, ultimately they decide," said Attorney Paul Nicolai who represents the group.

Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse responded to the request for a petition in a statement sent to CBS 3 saying

"I'm very pleased that Paper City Development failed to submit their application by today's deadline. I expect the Massachusetts Gaming Commission to deny their request for an extension."

And Holyoke isn't alone, Chicopee Mayor Michael Bissonnette tells CBS 3 that he has also filed for an extension, saying a developer has an option to buy the Cabotville building on Front Street, but so far has no casino operator.

State gaming officials say they have received the requests but so far have no timetable on how they will respond.

"If anybody applies to us formally for a waiver, we will look at it and talk about it in a public meeting, but fundamentally we're adhering to the schedule," Crosby said.

All 11 applicants will undergo extensive background checks throughout the next phase of the states process.

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