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    Saturday, March 02, 2024

    Let tribes provide online sports gambling -- now!

    It seems like every few months I have to remake the argument for two of the largest employers in Connecticut – the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods casinos – about why state government should strive to retain and grow them like we do every other business in the state.

    My latest mission revolves around British-based Sportech, which is lately making noise about the need for the Connecticut state legislature to hurry up and legalize retail and online sports betting – and to include them in the profits, of course (“OTB operator says tribes are ‘roadblock’ in Connecticut sports-betting debate,” Aug. 23).

    Yes, we should hurry up – to allow the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribal nations to expand into online sports betting. It's an idea I put forth in December 2019, only to run into a wall of indecision from the current administration.

    I want to make this perfectly clear: just last month, the Pequots and Mohegans delivered $19.5 million into Connecticut's checking account. By comparison, Sportech generated a little over $3 million for all of 2019. I can't understand why we're still having these conversations.

    I will do everything in my power to honor the historic gaming agreements that Connecticut has made with the Pequots and Mohegans and not let corporate interests from foreign countries dictate Connecticut's legislative policies. 

    State Senator Cathy Osten

    19th District

    Sprague

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