gambling | Connecticut Public Radio


When Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick signed the law two years ago legalizing casino gambling in Massachusetts there were great expectations for thousands of jobs and tens of millions of dollars in tax revenue. Now as the end-of-the year deadline approaches for final applications for gaming licenses there is great uncertainty.

Mark Pazniokas / CT Mirror

We’re less than a year away from the 2014 midterm election, but we’re still wrapping up a major story from the last congressional election. One of the key figures in the Chris Donovan scandal involving illegal campaign contributions was sentenced on Monday.

Town of Milford, Massachusetts

Voters in Milford, Massachusetts have rejected plans by Foxwoods to build a billion-dollar resort casino in the town.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Another chapter in the political scandal that derailed former House Speaker Chris Donovan’s congressional campaign has come to a close as one of the key figures in the case was sentenced earlier this week. Our weekly political news roundtable The Wheelhouse will discuss this and what the Obamacare delay means for Connecticut. And will Foxwoods get a casino in Massachusetts?

Town of Milford, Massachusetts

The town of Milford, Massachusetts will get a chance to vote today on a plan by Foxwoods to build a $1 billion resort casino. Foxwoods wants to bid for one of three casino licenses that will be issued in the Bay State next year. 

Mohegan Sun

The town of Palmer, Massachusetts will hold a hand recount of its vote on a resort casino plan, but not until November 26. The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority had requested the recount after losing the poll November 5 by just 93 votes. 

Mohegan Sun said it will seek a recount in Palmer, Massachusetts, after the town rejected its billion-dollar resort casino plan. The proposal was defeated by just 93 votes: 2,657 for, to 2,564 against.

The Connecticut-based casino giant had been planning to bid for the western Massachusetts license early next year. The defeat means that MGM's plan to build a casino in downtown Springfield will be the only bidder for the western Massachusetts license.

Brad Willis / Creative Commons

Residents in Palmer, Massachusetts will vote Tuesday on whether to support or reject a proposal by Mohegan Sun to build a $1 billion resort casino in their town. Polls show that support for the idea of a casino in Palmer continues to increase, but that does not guarantee a win for casino supporters. 

Pequot Tribal Treasurer Resigns

Oct 2, 2013

The treasurer of the tribe that owns Foxwoods Resort Casino has resigned from the tribal council as he awaits trial on federal theft charges, the Associated Press reports.

Keno Gets Closer; Anchoring Bass Pro; Rail Headaches

Sep 27, 2013
Nazox / Wikimedia Commons

Connecticut has been dancing around the idea of keno for a while now. The state made another move across the room to commit some spending that would help to bring keno to hundreds of locations in the state. Meanwhile, the bond commission is working to get Bass Pro Shops in place in Bridgeport, and miserable commuters continue to cope with a broken Metro-North. Read about it in today's Wheelhouse Digest.

Springfield voters have approved the MGM casino plan ...UConn is conducting an investigation into how the university handled allegations of sexual abuse by one of their professors...and last week, the Eastern League All-Star Game was held at New Britain Stadium and Governor Dannel Malloy received a less-than-warm welcome.

Turns out national political observers have their eyes on Malloy, too...he’s on a Washington Post list of “governors likely to lose their seats.”

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Once again this week, there’s news coming from the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shootings in December.

On Sunday, the Danbury News-Times ran a story where a “source close to the police investigation” suggests that Newtown police delayed before entering the school. It’s the latest in a series of stories trickling out as we await an official report from the state.

Chion Wolf

Once again this week, there’s news coming from the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shootings in December.

On Sunday, the Danbury News-Times ran a story where a “source close to the police investigation” suggests that Newtown police delayed before entering the school. It’s the latest in a series of stories trickling out as we await an official report from the state.

edkohler / Creative Commons

Promises - easy to make and tricky to keep.

In the case of Governor Dannel Malloy, he promised throughout the legislative session that he wouldn't raise taxes.  And, by his account, he didn't.  (Others disagree.)

But here's a riddle.  If you promise not to raise taxes, and you've cut all you say you can cut, and you STILL need money to balance the state's books, what do you do?

Answer: Keno.

Wikipedia / Creative Commons

Mary Drexler is executive director of the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling.  When Connecticut considers a big move like adding keno to the gambling menu, it's her job to attend all the public hearings and committee meetings at which the change is discussed.  It's her job to offer testimony on the bill and to recruit other experts who can offer opinion on the impact of increased gaming.  This time, she didn't do any of that.  She couldn't, because there were no public hearings or committee meetings. State-sponsored Keno was legalized in Connecticut by, essentially, a back room deal.

Roundnoon, Flickr Creative Commons

Daniel Lobo (Flickr Creative Commons)

This was not the first year that Keno was discussed in the state of Connecticut. But its inclusion in the 2013 budget surprised many - including those who thought they were following it closely.

Earlier this week,  executive director of the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling Mary Drexler said she's been in contact with Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman about Keno for the last two years.

"I did not get any word on this until Friday of last week," said Drexler about the deal that passed the legislature.

Connecticut's Indigenous People

May 28, 2013
Chion Wolf

Lucianne Lavin is out to dispel some myths about Connecticut’s native peoples. They didn't all move west or die out from war or disease, she says. Those who remain don’t all have claim to the land or the heritage.

In her comprehensive book, Connecticut’s Indigenous Peoples, she explores this lineage through archeology, history and oral traditions.

It takes us up to present day New England, where “native American tribe” is synonymous to many with “tribal casino.”

MGM Springfield

Could we someday have the “Springfield Strip?”  

Yesterday MGM unveiled their plans to revive the struggling Massachusetts city by pumping 800 million dollars into a gambling resort, entertainment complex, and housing development. It’s one of several proposals on the table as Mass tries to take on Connecticut casinos.

Governor Malloy's First Year

Jan 11, 2012
Chion Wolf / WNPR

Just over a year ago, Governor Dannel Malloy became the state’s first Democratic governor in 20 years.

His first year in office could be remembered in any number of ways: the state budget battle, the union concession rejection and then approval...and of course the weather.

Later today, he’s announcing his proposals coming out of the two-storm panel, which investigated the response to the storms...they announced their findings earlier this week.

Photo by Chion Wolf

Gov. Dannel Malloy says it's inevitable that online gambling will come to Connecticut. WNPR’s Lucy Nalpathanchil has more

Courtesy of Flickr CC by Darin House

A recent Department of Justice ruling clears the way for states to operate online lotteries and gaming. And lawmakers may take up whether to permit online gambling in the upcoming legislative session. WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil has more.

Just last week, Governor Dannel Malloy told the Hartford Courant that gaming is an important part of the Connecticut's economy and to remain competitive the state must consider online gaming or risk losing revenue to other states.

maorix (Flickr Creative Commons)

The Connecticut Mirror's Mark Pazniokas looked at how Governor Dannell Malloy is taking a broad look at new ways to bring more gambling revenue into state coffers. Mark Pazniokas joins us now by phone.

From Pazniokas' story:

With competition rising on all sides, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy says he is working with the Mashantucket Pequots and Mohegans to stabilize their market share -- and Connecticut's 25 percent cut of the gross profits from their slot machines.

Gambling In The Bay State

Oct 13, 2011
Rob Boudon (Flickr Creative Commons)

Massachusetts senators are set to begin a fifth day of debate on a bill that would bring casino gambling to the state. It’s been an ongoing political fight in Boston...that could have a big climax today. Connecticut’s casinos, both Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun, draw visitors from throughout the northeast. Supporters say the casinos would create new jobs in the state while opponents don’t think it would create enough jobs to make it worth it. 

ElvertBarnes, Flickr Creative Commons

I don't really know how anybody knows this, jut we're told that 19 million people play Fantasy Football and that businesses lose nine billion dollars in productivity to be obsessing about their teams and picks.

We're told that the business end of Fantasy Football -- not the money the players put in the pot but the huge industry of advertising supported sites that feed their obsessions -- is worth somewhere between one and four billion dollars.