Hearings this week in Massachusetts on Mohegan Sun, Wynn casinos
Boston - State gambling regulators will hold separate public hearings in Revere and Everett this week on the two casino proposals vying for the sole Boston-area license.
Mohegan Sun has proposed a $1.3 billion casino on the Revere side of the Suffolk Downs horse racing track and Wynn Resorts has proposed a $1.6 billion casino on a former chemical plant site in Everett.
"This is a really important part of the process that's required by law," said acting Massachusetts Gaming Commissioner James McHugh. "They are an opportunity for the applicant to present to the local community a final summation of the project and to get feedback from citizens as to how they view the project - its strengths and its weaknesses."
The commission is expected to award the Boston-area license in late August or early September.
Earlier this month, it awarded the casino license for the Springfield-area to MGM Resorts International.
In February, it granted Penn National Gaming the state's sole slot parlor license for its project at the Plainridge harness racing track in Plainville. The commission is also authorized to issue a casino license for the Fall River/New Bedford area. That is not expected until February 2015.
Mohegan Sun's plan, which was approved by Revere voters in February, calls for redeveloping a roughly 40-acre site near the horse racing track.
The development includes a 170,000 square foot casino floor, 500-room hotel and shopping and entertainment space. The casino says the proposal will create at least 2,500 construction jobs and about 4,000 permanent positions.
Mohegan Sun has also reached an agreement with Revere that guarantees the city roughly $33 million during the construction phase and another $25 to $30 million or so in annual payments once the casino is open.
Wynn Resorts' proposal, which was approved by Everett voters last June, calls for redeveloping the approximately 30-acre former Monsanto Chemical Co. site on the Mystic River.
The development includes an approximately 100,000 square foot casino floor, a more than 500-room hotel, and space for nightclubs, restaurants and shopping. Wynn says the plan will create roughly 3,700 construction jobs and more than 4,000 permanent jobs.
The casino also reached a deal with Everett that pays the city $30 million during construction and more than $25 million a year once the casino opens.
Mohegan Sun's hearing takes place Tuesday at Revere High School; Wynn's will be Wednesday at the Edward G. Connolly Center in Everett. Both meetings start at 4 p.m.
McHugh says the hearings will be capped at four hours and comments from the public limited to about four minutes each.
Casino and city officials, however, are expected to open the meeting with about an hour to outline the project and take questions from the commission.
If there is more testimony than time allows, McHugh says the commission may consider hosting further hearings.
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