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East Windsor casino proposal clears key legislative panel

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HARTFORD  — Legislation allowing the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes to build a third casino in East Windsor has cleared a key legislative committee, but not without some criticism.

Several lawmakers attempted Monday to amend the bill, but their efforts fell short.

The proposed changes would have a required referendum in East Windsor; $500,000 in annual payments for surrounding communities; and a five percent share of proceeds to help pari-mutuel gambling venues, such as off-track betting.

The bill cleared by the General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee by a vote of 33-13. It now moves to the Senate for further action.

The two tribes hope to build the new casino to compete with the MGM Resorts casino being built in Springfield, Massachusetts. They say it will protect jobs at their existing southeastern Connecticut casinos.

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