Anybody following the story of The Great Casino expansion of Massachusetts, knows that the voters of Bay State will now have a chance to repeal the casino law of 2012. The law authorized casino-style gaming and its repeal could affect the rights of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe who has a Class III gaming compact that was approved by the BIA (Bureau of Indian Affairs).
It’s not clear what will happen to the agreement if the referendum passes — tribes to engage in the same types of games that are legal in a state. The tribe’s right to offer Class II games, such as bingo and electronic forms of bingo, would not be affected either way.
But, while the Wampanoag Mashpee continue to try to get their act together and another tribe makes plans for Cape Cod, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission opened up the Southeastern region, Region C, to other applicants. Only Foxwoods has stepped up to offer a casino in that region. So, to make the process even longer, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission decided to provide a chance for more applicants – even those that lost out previously, such as Ceasars Entertainment & Hard Rock, so the competition will insure a better product. they have pushed forward the date and opened up the licensing process for more suitors. Applicants deadline is now March, 2015. The expected selection is expected to be no later than August, 2015.
Here are the latest developments in Region C: (reported by Travis Anderson, Boston Globe)
- Federal officials have effectively approved a compact between the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe and the state laying out a revenue deal for a proposed tribal casino in Taunton, but the future of the project remains uncertain.
- One company, KG Urban Enterprises, has applied for the southeastern license to open a New Bedford casino, which would compete with a tribal facility in Taunton.
- Foxwoods is also weighing whether to seek the southeastern license for a Fall River casino.
- The Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah plans to pursue a casino project in Gay Head (reported by Martine Powers, Boston Globe)
Southeastern Massachusetts way is behind the other regions in the licensing process. With a repeal of the law in November, this all could be a waste of time, money, and consideration. The irony would be that, if repealed, the casino law would null any casino plans except the Wampanoags, because of its Tribal Sovereignty.
Let’s wait wait for November, and see where things fall.
If a book was written about the rise of Foxwoods in CT, just think what a novel about the Bay States Casino Quest for casino gambling would be titled. How about
“The Rise and Fall and Delay and Rise and Fall and Rise, etc ……… of the Great Massachusetts Gambling Experiment.”
That’s all for now.