South Windsor still a possible casino location despite residents’ opposition

SOUTH WINDSOR – The Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes are still deciding where they want to build Connecticut’s third casino, and for now, South Windsor is still in consideration despite vocal opposition.

South Windsor Town Manager Matt Galligan said tribal representatives plan to visit all five communities in the running this winter. Galligan said they are looking at mid-December for South Windsor’s visit.

Galligan made the announcement during a casino discussion at Monday night’s Town Council meeting. South Windsor Town Councilman Saud Anwar had proposed a resolution that would direct Galligan to send a letter informing all entities involved in the casino decision that South Windsor does not want it in their town.

“People need to be heard because I have not come across anybody in the town of South Windsor who’s interested to have a casino,” said Anwar.

“If the citizens do not want it, they probably should not even entertain our RFP,” he added.

The proposed location is near the Route 5 and I-291 intersection.

Developer DCK submitted an application to the tribes, but the details of that are private under a non-disclosure agreement.

On Monday night, town leaders opened public comment by saying they don’t know the details of the proposal themselves. After that, 22 people spoke about the casino. None of them spoke in favor.

Residents said they have concerns about how the casino would affect traffic, crime, their property values and their overall way of life. They said they don’t want South Windsor to be known as a “casino town.”

The Town Council voted 6-2 to table the discussion on the casino until more information is available. They do hope more details are provided during the upcoming community meetings.

“It may benefit us to kind of wait and see what they’re proposing and what the benefits are to the town,” said Galligan, who added those benefits could include millions of dollars in tax revenue and thousands of jobs.

East Windsor, East Hartford, Hartford and Windsor Locks are also possible sites for the casino.

A spokesman for the tribes said they plan to propose a bill regarding the new casino and its location during this upcoming legislative session.