East Windsor, Windsor Locks advance to next stage in casino site selection process

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HARTFORD — Two towns have advanced to the next stage in the site selection process for a new casino planned for the north central part of the state.

Sites in East Windsor and Windsor Locks are still under consideration, while the sites in East Hartford, Hartford and South Windsor are no longer in the running according to a statement released by The Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan Tribes who are joining forces to build the facility in response to the construction of the MGM Casino over the border in Springfield, Mass.

“After a detailed economic analysis, we’ve determined that East Windsor and Windsor Locks align best with our development models and preserve more jobs and revenue for the state,” said Mohegan Tribal Council Chairman Kevin Brown.

Officials from MGM called the siting process a sham.

“This is not the right way for a state to enter into its first commercial casino.  The right way is what we’ve been suggesting all along: the state should scrap the current law and adopt a new one that guarantees a fair, open, transparent, and most important, a competitive process.  One that allows all qualified bidders to compete,” said Alan Feldman, Executive Vice President, MGM Resorts International in a statement.

The tribes said they will work with East Windsor and Windsor Locks officials to set up local forums on the plans.

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