The voters of West Springfield, Mass. rejected a proposal by Hard Rock International to build an $800 million casino on the grounds of the Big E Fair, Tuesday night. Those against the proposal from the outset seemed shocked by the results.
“For a group of 50 to 75 people with the budget of $17,000 to beat a political machine is a higher power miracle,” Ted Hebert said.
Hard Rock, on the other hand, digested the results.
“We thought we were honest, open, above board, transparent, communicated our message very well, I thought. And, we’ve been told by the residents, we don’t want you,” President of Hard Rock New England Tim Maland said.
Over 45 percent of West Springfield came out to vote on Tuesday. The proposal was rejected 4,165 votes to 3,414.
By State law, only one casino can be built in Western Mass., leaving two possible proposals to choose from. Springfield already voted in favor of a plan for an MGM casino and the town of Palmer will vote on a Mohegan Sun proposal on Nov. 5.