Ah, sweet victory: Steve Wynn’s Everett, Massachusetts casino can finally move ahead after having a referendum vote supporting casinos passed away last night.
Residents of Massachusetts have chosen to uphold the state’s three-year-old casino law, voting overwhelmingly in yesterday’s midterms in favor of maintaining the fledgling casino market, while the polls had predicted.
Somewhat confusingly, ‘no’ meant ‘yes’ for casinos on this ballot, as voters were asked whether or not the legislation should be repealed, with 59.5 per cent to 40.5 percent deciding that no, it will never be repealed, meaning that yes, they wanted casinos.
Some commentators have recommended that the language used in posing the question was deliberately muddled and created to confuse.
Nevertheless, it is a victory for MGM and Wynn Resorts, who have had their respective projects offered the greenlight by regulators and who can now finally and definitely go forward with the licensing process, a privilege for which they will fork out $85 million a piece before a cornerstone that is single set.
Not surprisingly, casino executives were jubilant and anxious to emphasize exactly what the casinos will do for their communities that are future.
‘Voters across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts today voiced their support of the 10,000 permanent job opportunities and significant financial benefits given by the Gaming Act of 2011,’ said pleased MGM Chairman and CEO Jim Murren. ‘MGM Resorts International would like to thank the thousands of volunteers and supporters who comprehended what was at stake and worked so hard to bring this historic opportunity to realization we can now begin the task slotsforfun-ca.com of rebuilding a fantastic downtown, and igniting a renaissance in Western Massachusetts. for themselves and their neighbors …’
The Following Big Step
MGM now plans to build an $800 million casino resort on a plot that is 14.5-acre downtown Springfield, with construction likely to begin into the springtime and a planned opening in the summer of 2017.
Wynn Resorts, meanwhile, which fought a bidding that is protracted with Mohegan Sun for the best to apply for the only real east Massachusetts license, a right it was granted only in early September, will go ahead using its plans to construct a $1.6 billion casino on a contaminated former chemical plant in Everett, north of Boston. Wynn will pay millions to have the site cleaned up and decontaminated before construction ensues.
‘it,’ said Wynn Resorts Senior Vice President Robert DeSalvio while it has been a long process, the benefits to everyone in the Commonwealth will be worth.
Never ever in Doubt?
The third license was secured earlier in the day within the year by Penn National Gaming, which quickly moved ahead along with its plans to expand Plainridge Park harness racetrack into a slots parlor, despite knowing there was clearly a chance that the bill could be repealed.
‘It’s a risk, nonetheless it’s a risk that is calculated’ said Jay Snowden, Penn National’s chief operating officer, several months straight back. ‘We’re confident we are going to prevail in november’
And he was right, but the issue was perhaps never really in doubt. While the Repeal the Deal contingent was vocal, it lacked the funding of its powerful opponents, and the pro-casino vote had led consistently in the polls.
According to recent campaign finance reports, ‘no’ (meaning yes) vote campaigners had raised nearly $12 million, most of it donated by casino companies, while the ‘yes’ meaning no vote was in a position to raise just $675,000.
MGM donated $2.5 million and Wynn Resorts $1 million, while Penn National topped the bill with $3.2 million. This ended up being the explanation that the effort that is pro-casino able to spend $2 million on casino advertising in October alone, at a period when its opponents had been a declaring a balance of $30,000 and debts of $400,000.
Nationwide Election Results May Affect US Online Gambling
Supporters of a Wynn casino in Everett celebrated the defeat of a casino repeal effort in Massachusetts. (Image: Barry Chin/Globe Staff)
Election 2014 didn’t feature a referendum on Internet gambling, nor did anything earth-shattering occur that will forever change the gaming landscape in the United States day.
Still, there were number of regional results that were of interest to people who worry about gambling problems, and one overarching storyline that could contour the movement associated with debate over online gambling for the next two years.
That big story, while you may have guessed, was the Republican takeover of the Senate.
While results (including a runoff election and a decision by Independent Senator Angus King on which party to caucus with) won’t be known for some time, the GOP has clinched at least 52 seats within the Senate, one significantly more than had been required in order to take the majority.
Republican Majority and On The Web Poker
While this shouldn’t incite panic among those whom enjoy online gambling, the Republican majorities in both houses are worth keeping an eye on. Thanks to a plank within the national platform that is republican the support of Las Vegas Sands Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson, the absolute most vocal voices opposed to online gambling tend to come from the GOP. The new majority could lead supporters of the Restoration of America’s Wire Act to attempt to advance the bill in Congress.
However, the likelihood of such a bill passing are still rather slim. Not everyone in the Republican Party is in favor of an online gambling ban, and even a lot of those which can be may well not think the issue is well worth fighting over, as it’s hardly a significant consideration on the list of public that is general. While those in support of a ban could probably court support that is enough democratic offset the losses within their own party, that’s far from certain, and the prospect of a split within the GOP regarding the issue may be enough to cease it from ever gaining any momentum.
Massachusetts Casino Repeal Defeated Handily
Much more local results, there have been two ballot initiatives of interest to the gaming industry, one on each coast. On the East Coast, perhaps the highest-profile gambling battle of the year occurred in Massachusetts, where anti-casino activists were hoping to repeal a law that allowed for the licensing and building of three resort gambling enterprises in their state, along with a slots parlor. As recent polling suggested, the anti-casino forces came up well short, with 59 percent voting ‘No’ on the repeal.
Still, state officials acknowledged that the significant part of the populace that ended up being against their efforts had made their sounds heard.
‘ We realize that approximately 41 percent voted in favor of the ballot initiative [meaning for the repeal], which is our job to keep to make the confidence of most the people in Massachusetts proponents and opponents alike,’ said Steve Crosby, chairman of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
Meanwhile, voters in California rejected Proposition 48, a measure that could have allowed the North Fork Rancheria Band of Mono Indians to build a casino that is major 40 kilometers far from their reservation. Had the proposition passed, opponents stated it would have set a precedent tribes that are allowing build gaming facilities far beyond their lands.
‘This vote no puts the ball squarely in the state Legislature’s court: they now can make a constant policy on tribal gaming,’ said Cheryl Schmit, director of remain true for California, a group opposing the proposition.
Some gubernatorial races may likewise have an impact on the future of both land-based and online gambling in various states. Perhaps most notably, the re-election of Florida governor Rick Scott in a tight battle over Democratic challenger Charlie Crist was viewed as a bad sign for on line gambling into the state, as Scott is a huge supporter of Adelson’s efforts to ban Web gambling.
Chukchansi Gold Casino Tribal Leaders Turn Themselves In After Break-In
Tex McDonald, leader of the group that stormed the Chukchansi casino month that is last turns himself in. (Image: fresnobee.com)
Two council that is tribal charged with serious offenses relating to final month’s armed standoff at the Chukchansi Gold Resort and Casino near Coarsegold, California have turned themselves in. The casino had been stormed by 20 armed men on October 9, the culmination of the power that is bizarre between rival factions vying for control of the casino.
No arrests had been made at the scene, since the siege happened on tribal land, but Madera County District Attorney Michael Keitz announced last Friday that 15 of the aggressors would be charged with serious felonies, including kidnapping, false imprisonment, assault by having a firearm, assault with a deadly weapon, and battery inflicting serious injury.
The group’s leader, Tex McDonald, 64, and other council member Vernon James King, 59, switched on their own in on Monday, accompanied several hours later on by two members regarding the security force that accompanied the group on the raid.
McDonald, whom has past convictions for assault with a weapon that is deadly making criminal threats, is charged with kidnapping, false imprisonment, attack by having a firearm, attack with a lethal weapon, battery causing serious injury, and assault with a stun gun, and his bail has been set at $1 million. The other people face similar costs, with bail set at $800,000 for each.
Another security guard was arrested Sunday, but during the time of writing, 10 people remain at large.
The origin of the dispute among the Picayune Ranchera of Chukchansi Indians seems to relate to the practice that is controversial of,’ in which a tribe strips certain members of their tribal status, hence denying them the associated benefits, in this instance benefit from the casino.
Since 2003, hundreds of users have been stripped of their affiliations that are tribal including a few of the last native speakers of the Chukchansi language. This led up to a disputed election in 2012 and a schism within the tribe between those that supported disenrollment and those bitterly opposed.
This indicates the McDonald faction had been managing the casino from its base at a business that is nearby up until August, when the rival faction, led by Reggie Lewis, a proponent of disenrollment and incumbent leader of the council after the disputed election, occupied the 10th and 11th floors of the casino within the very early hours of the morning, effortlessly taking it over.
Then in October, the Tribal Gaming Authority threatened to close the casino down and fine the tribe up to $16 million, because of filing that is late of. This prompted the McDonald faction to work, in whatever they claim was an attempt to retrieve the audits and save the casino.
Criminal or Hero?
Also to some, despite the criminality of his tactics, McDonald is really a hero, a ‘patriot’ fighting for the great associated with the tribe. ‘My clients went in to recover documents and so the casino would not power down,’ advertised his lawyer, adding that the faction represented the ‘duly constituted tribal council. They simply took steps to protect the tribe.’
Others, however, don’t see quite the same tactics that are heroic the break-in.
‘Calling Tex McDonald a patriot is like calling a dictator democratically elected,’ said Richard Verri, representing the Lewis group. ‘ The criminal justice system will see whether or not the images caught on video of the unlawful actions while the violence he committed upon a casino employee was lawful or unlawful.’
Regardless of the truth of this matter, McDonald now faces a ‘significant amount of the time’ in state jail, in accordance with District Attorney Keitz. And meanwhile the casino remains shuttered by purchase of a judge that is federal with the consequence of lost revenue becoming devastating to the community.