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Holyoke Takes First Step in Reviewing Casino Proposals

Holyoke, Mass. (WGGB) — The City of Holyoke is taking its first step towards evaluating whether current casino proposals meet minimum criteria to merit negotiation of a host agreement in 2013.

The Office of Planning & Economic Development sent a letter out to each of the interested parties who are looking to establish a casino resort in the city.   They include Anthony Ravosa of Paper City Development, Eric Suher of Iron Horse Entertainment Group and Charles Petitti of Holyoke-NonProfit Casino.

The letter which was sent out to all 3 on Wednesday, outlines the minimum criteria that would be used to guide the executive’s review of proposals, subject to input and improvement by the community.

“I am dedicated to moving quickly to keep Holyoke at the table, and to have an efficient review process that ensures a transparent and engaged discussion of the options presented to the City,” says Mayor Morse.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission’s Phase I Application deadline is on January 15, 2013.

Morse says despite the time constraint, the city will still be dedicated to establishing an efficient review process while still ensuring a transparent and engaged discussion of the options presented to the City.

On that effort, the Mayor’s Office is now accepting nominations of city stakeholders who would like to be part of a Community Committee which will provide leadership and input on the public review process, collect public feedback and assist the city in determining if a proposal meets the minimum criteria.

Those interested have until Friday, December 6 at 2:00 p.m. to submit their request.