After a winter blizzard dumped 18 inches of snow on Connecticut yesterday and forced the state government to temporarily shut down, governor Dannel Malloy has reportedly announced that things are set to return to normal later today with legislators due to hold a crucial vote on the future of proposed casino expansion legislation.
According to a report from local television broadcaster WTIC-TV, Malloy instituted a temporary state-wide travel ban late Tuesday afternoon and the move forced the Connecticut General Assembly’s Public Safety And Security Committee to postpone a vote on the future of enabling legislation that would allow MMCT Venture, which is a joint venture of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, to build a new casino in the town of East Windsor.
However, this travel prohibition has been lifted and the Public Safety And Security Committee is now scheduled to meet later today to decide on the future of the proposed Hartford County venue along with a second measure that would create a competitive process to consider casino expansion.
“We urge residents to allow for extra travel time today to ensure that they arrive at their destinations safely,” read a statement from Malloy. “Road conditions may be icy this morning and motorists are reminded to use their winter driving skills; slow down and allow for extra space between vehicles. I want to especially thank the road crews as well as the first-responders for the job they have done around-the-clock on behalf of the residents of our state.”
The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority operates the Mohegan Sun casino resort in south-eastern Connecticut while the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation is responsible for the nearby Foxwoods Resort Casino. The pair first announced in 2015 that they were teaming up in order to petition the state government for permission to build a smaller gambling venue that would counter competition from the coming MGM Springfield, which is being built in neighboring Massachusetts by MGM Resorts International and is expected to open in 2019.
However, the proposal for a third tribal casino in Connecticut has encountered opposition from Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts International while the eastern state’s Attorney General, George Jepsen, recently explained that authorizing the East Windsor casino could leave Hartford open to lawsuits and jeopardize its current revenue-sharing agreement with the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority and the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation.