MGM reps: "This is the landslide vote we needed" - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

MGM reps: "This is the landslide vote we needed"

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MGM is one step closer to building a casino in Springfield.

Voters approved their $800 million casino proposal for the city's South End tonight.

They voted 58 percent in favor of the plan.

Forty-two percent voted against it.

Voters, MGM reps and Springfield officials were charged up at MGM's victory party at the Springfield History Museum.

MGM Springfield's President, Bill Hornbuckle says this was the decisive win the company wanted to make a good showing to the gaming commission.

"We're ecstatic. In any other political election this is a landslide, and the people of Springfield have come out, and they've spoken and they've spoken in favor of a great project."

Hundreds of MGM volunteers have canvassed the city of homes in these final hours, and Hornbuckle says that was a big part of their success Tuesday night.

"We literally knocked on almost 28,000 doors, 40,000 phone calls in the last couple weeks. We literally had teams out today, until the final hour knocking on door," he said.

Mayor Domenic Sarno has been in favor of a casino. He says this could be Springfield's big break.

"This brings fiscal stability, and enables me to bring a positive effect to Springfield taxpayers, and continue to bring services forward."

Roughly 25 percent of voters cast ballots on this historic day in the city.

Voters at MGM's victory party Tuesday night said they see MGM as a catalyst for city-wide improvements.

"With MGM coming to Springfield, I'm very excited about restoring that vision," said Springfield resident and business owner, Eutrina Holley.

The mayor says while they'll celebrate for now, the hard work will now truly begin.

"Now it's time to move forward, and I'm really anxious to beckon in a new Springfield renaissance."

This was a major step forward for MGM, but they still have to face off against Hard Rock in West Springfield and Mohegan Sun in Palmer, if voters in those towns vote yes as well.

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