Massachusetts Pro-Casino Referendum Takes the afternoon

Massachusetts Pro-Casino Referendum Takes the afternoon

Ah, sweet victory: Steve Wynn’s Everett, Massachusetts casino can finally move ahead after a referendum vote supporting casinos passed last night.

Residents of Massachusetts have plumped for to uphold the state’s three-year-old casino law, voting overwhelmingly in yesterday’s midterms in favor of maintaining the fledgling casino market, due to the fact polls had predicted.

Somewhat confusingly, ‘no’ meant ‘yes’ for casinos on this ballot, as voters were asked whether or not the law should really be repealed, with 59.5 % to 40.5 percent deciding that no, it should never be repealed, meaning that yes, they wanted casinos.

Some commentators have suggested that the language used in posing the relevant question was deliberately muddled and designed to confuse.

However, it is a victory for MGM and Wynn Resorts, who may have had their respective projects offered the greenlight by regulators and who can now finally and definitely move forward with the licensing process, a privilege which is why they will fork out $85 million an item before a cornerstone that is single laid.

Not surprisingly, casino executives had been jubilant and anxious to emphasize just what the casinos will do for their future communities.

‘Voters across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts today voiced their support of the 10,000 job that is permanent and significant economic benefits provided 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 understood exactly what is at stake and worked so difficult to bring this historic opportunity to realization for themselves and their neighbors … we are now able to begin the task of rebuilding a great downtown, and igniting a renaissance in Western Massachusetts.’

The Following Big Step

MGM now plans to build an $800 million casino resort on a 14.5-acre plot in downtown Springfield, with construction likely to begin within the spring and a planned opening in summer time of 2017.

Wynn Resorts, meanwhile, which fought a protracted bidding war with Mohegan Sun for the right to apply for the only real east Massachusetts license, the right it absolutely was granted just in early September, will go ahead along with its plans to construct a $1.6 billion casino for 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.

‘While it has been a lengthy procedure, the benefits to everybody else in the Commonwealth will be well worth it,’ said Wynn Resorts Senior Vice President Robert DeSalvio.

Never ever in Doubt?

The license that is third secured earlier in the day in the year by Penn National Gaming, which quickly moved ahead with its plans to expand Plainridge Park harness racetrack in to a slots parlor, despite knowing there clearly was a chance that the bill could be repealed.

‘It’s a risk, however it’s a risk that is calculated’ quick hits slot machines said Jay Snowden, Penn National’s chief operating officer, several months straight back. ‘We’re confident we’ll prevail in November.’

And he had been right, nevertheless the presssing issue was perhaps hardly ever 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 regularly in the polls.

In accordance with recent campaign finance reports, ‘no’ (meaning yes) vote campaigners had raised nearly $12 million, most of it donated by casino businesses, while the ‘yes’ meaning no vote was able to raise simply $675,000.

MGM donated $2.5 million and Wynn Resorts $1 million, while Penn National topped the bill with $3.2 million. This had been the reason that the pro-casino effort was in a position to invest $2 million on casino advertising in October alone, at a period whenever its opponents were 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 beat of the 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 local results that were of interest to those who worry about gambling issues, and one overarching storyline which could shape the motion of the debate over online gambling for the following two years.

That story that is big as you might 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 the very least 52 seats into the Senate, one more than was needed 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 track of. Thanks to a plank in the national Republican platform and the support of Las vegas, nevada Sands Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson, the absolute most vocal voices opposed to online gambling tend in the future from the GOP. The majority that is new lead supporters of the Restoration of America’s Wire Act to attempt to advance the bill in Congress.

However, the odds 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 many of those which can be may not think the problem is worth fighting over, as it really is hardly a major consideration among the public that is general. While those in support of a ban could probably court enough Democratic help to offset the losses within their own party, that is far from specific, and the prospect of a split within the GOP on the issue might be enough to avoid it from ever gaining any energy.

Massachusetts Casino Repeal Defeated Handily

In more local results, there were two ballot initiatives of great interest to the gaming industry, one on each coast. In the East Coast, perhaps the highest-profile gambling battle of the year took place in Massachusetts, where anti-casino activists were hoping to repeal a law that allowed for the licensing and building of three resort casinos in the state, along side a slots parlor. As present polling suggested, the anti-casino forces came up well short, with 59 percent voting ‘No’ on the repeal.

Still, state officials acknowledged that the portion that is significant of population that had been against their efforts had made their voices heard.

‘ We understand that approximately 41 percent voted in favor of the ballot effort [meaning for the repeal], and it is our job to keep to earn the self-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 will have allowed the North Fork Rancheria Band of Mono Indians to create a major casino about 40 kilometers far from their reservation. Had the proposition passed, opponents stated it might have set a precedent tribes that are allowing build video gaming facilities far beyond their lands.

‘This vote no puts the ball squarely in the state Legislature’s court: they now can make a policy that is consistent tribal video gaming,’ stated Cheryl Schmit, director of Stand Up for California, an organization opposing the proposition.

Some gubernatorial races may also provide an effect on the future of both land-based and gambling that is online various states. Perhaps many notably, the re-election of Florida governor Rick Scott in a race that is tight Democratic challenger Charlie Crist was regarded as a bad sign for on the web gambling within the state, as Scott has become a supporter of Adelson’s efforts to ban online 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 tribal council users 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 was stormed by 20 armed men on October 9, the culmination of a power that is bizarre between competing factions vying for control of the casino.

No arrests were made at the scene, because the siege happened on tribal land, but Madera County District Attorney Michael Keitz announced last Friday that 15 of the aggressors would be faced with severe felonies, including kidnapping, false imprisonment, attack having a firearm, attack with a life-threatening weapon, and battery inflicting injury that is serious.

The group’s leader, Tex McDonald, 64, and council that is fellow Vernon James King, 59, turned on their own in on Monday, accompanied several hours later by two members of 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 with a firearm, assault with a lethal weapon, battery causing serious injury, and attack with a stun gun, and his bail has been set at $1 million. The other people face similar charges, with bail set at $800,000 for each.

Another protection guard was arrested Sunday, but at the time of writing, 10 people remain at large.

Disenrollment Controversy

The origin of the dispute among the Picayune Ranchera of Chukchansi Indians seems to relate to your practice that is controversial of,’ where a tribe strips certain members of their tribal status, hence denying them the associated benefits, in this situation make money from the casino.

Since 2003, hundreds of people have already been stripped of their tribal affiliations, including some of the last native speakers of the Chukchansi language. This led to a disputed election in 2012 and a schism within the tribe between those who supported disenrollment and those bitterly opposed.

It seems the McDonald faction was in fact managing the casino from its base at a nearby business complex up to August, if the rival faction, led by Reggie Lewis, a proponent of disenrollment and incumbent leader of the council after the disputed election, occupied the tenth and 11th floors of the casino within the early hours of the morning, effectively 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 act, in what 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 good associated with tribe. ‘My clients went in to recover papers so that the casino would not shut down,’ reported his attorney, adding that the faction represented the ‘duly constituted council that is tribal. They just took steps to protect the tribe.’

Other people, however, don’t see quite similar 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 determine whether or otherwise not the images caught on video of the illegal actions and also the violence he committed upon a casino employee ended up being lawful or unlawful.’

Long lasting truth of the matter, McDonald now faces a ‘significant amount of time’ in state prison, in accordance with District Attorney Keitz. And meanwhile the casino remains shuttered by order of the federal judge, with the consequence of lost revenue becoming devastating to the community.