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Voters decide on casino spending in East Windsor referendum

EAST WINDSOR -- A referendum held in East Windsor on Thursday and it came with a bit of controversy.

Two of the questions on that ballot surrounding the casino that the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes want to bring to town.
This referendum comes two weeks ahead of the election.

“My thoughts on the referendum today is, first of all, there is no casino and why are we doing an election three weeks before the actual election. It’s the current administration trying to rush things through and not give our town and community the respect it needs,” said East Windsor resident Bill Towers.

Voters are deciding whether or not to create a “Casino Impact Fund”. In that fund, they would put the initial $3 million payment they’re receiving from the casino developers, along with any additional money they receive from the casino annually.

They are also voting approve an ordinance that would decide how money in that fund would be spent.

“We have 3 referendum changes that are really not supporting our town right now. We’re coming together as a community we need change. Right now the team seems to be in conflict with the democrats, the republicans and what’s called team and crew. Team and crew have been in charge for a long time and we just need a change in the town,” said Katie Demao of East Windsor.

As for the casino itself that’s still up in the air. As the first selectmen told us, there are still a couple of lawsuits on the table right now that they need to work through before they start the building process.

“They’re considering coming here, they have done nothing to indicate that they are not coming here and a lot to indicate that they are coming here. So time will tell but it seems to be on the front burner again,” said East Windsor First Selectman Bob Maynard.

When talking about why the town is holding a referendum two weeks ahead of the election, The first selectmen said that the ballot for elections is already a long list of items. They wanted this to have special attention.

The third item voters were deciding on is regarding the town's animal shelter and whether or not it could continue to operate in town or if they should join a regional shelter.

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