In August 2019, MGM Resorts International, a Las Vegas based company, moved to court to protest a move by the US Department of Interior (DOI) that allowed the state of Connecticut, Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes to jointly open a casino in East Windsor, Conn.
This was after the federal agents at the DOI approved tribal compacts, which according to the suit filled by MGM did not go as per what their predecessors allowed. The said casino is to be located not more than 15 miles from MGM’s popular resort in Springfield, Mass. In response, the state of Connecticut and the two tribes have come out claiming that they will intervene to have the case dismissed.
On Tuesday, they filed their defense in the District of Columbia federal district court, stating that MGM has no base for their claims.
According to casino.org, earlier in October, the tribe and state had made a move to intervene. In their statement, they noted that the DOI had initially delayed on approving the Mashantucket compact that was required by both tribes so as to continue with their plans.
This was a clear sign that the DOI did not have their best interest at heart in the case. In response, MGM said that if the tribes wanted the case dismissed then they should join as defendants. However, the representative of the tribes and the state, all came together and said that since the intervenor’s interest is obvious due to availability of a precedent, it is okay for them to want the case dismissed. Despite the fact that this appears like they are considering their interest more than how it should, the tribes side of argument seems to make big sense.
Officials from the DOI are also fighting for dismissal of the case, defending themselves that by them approving the compact does not in any way go against the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. This can however only come true if the opposing side agree to share the same perspective. News reaching the Casino news desk, is that the two tribes plan on investing heavily on the project.
It is rumored the casino, which will be known as Tribal Winds Casino, will cost the tribes approximately 400 million dollars. It is expected to equipped with the latest games in plenty. It will have almost 200 slot machines and 120 gaming tables. Though its construction is yet to start, its officials estimate it will take up to 24 months for work to be done.
It is projected the casino will create approximately 70 million dollars for the state annually with a further 8.5 million dollars been generated for the East Winsor communities.
This casino will definitely be a big blow to the Springfield resort which has been struggling to meet its revenue goals. In its first year, it fell short of its target by nearly $145 million. In October alone, it generated $21 million which was its best performance in more then 5 months.