The plan for a new Tiverton Casino is moving one step closer to realization, after a narrow win of approval from local voters. After winning mass approval from the state, the municipal vote resulted in an only 368 pro-vote margin from locals in Tiverton – a town with a population of approximately 16,000 residents. Despite the win, there is still some caution to be taken by the prospective casino’s operators Twin River Management Group (TRMG), who are yet to win final approval from the town planning authorities in an upcoming council meeting.
After failing to get permission for adding table games in their Newport Grand Casino in Rhode Island, TRMG decided to move their casino license to a new location. For this purpose, the operator secured a 45-acre location, near the Fall River border with Massachusetts, and was subjected to a state-wide referendum which they won. But to proceed with the project, TRMG had to win local support, for which they spent nearly $3 million in various campaign efforts. The biggest pitch was the opening of new jobs and $3 million in yearly proceeds to the town.
But to officially begin construction, TRMG has to win the approval of the Tiverton Town Council in a meeting to be held this week, which might not go as smooth as planned. According to Town Administrator, Mathew Wojcik, the small number of votes is concerning to the local council who would need to proceed to the approval with “some caution”, as their role implies they take everyone’s views into consideration. Former US. Representative Bob Steele also warned about the upcoming developments by saying that no official evidence exists that confirms casino expansion projects aid local economies in the long term.
But regardless of the concerns, TRMG Chairman, John Taylor, commented that the company intends to “move quickly” while still keeping in mind local environmental and public safety concerns.