EAST LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WGGB) — What if a casino does come to Springfield? How would it impact surrounding communities? Those are among the concerns being discussed in local forums, like one ABC40 covered Tuesday night in East Longmeadow. The Board of Selectmen called the meeting together, to present information about the potential impact of having a casino in downtown Springfield.
When asked about the process of gathering information, and what common concerns residents have on the topic, East Longmeadow Planning Board member George Kingston responded: “Mostly we get concerns about the small amount of mitigation money available to the surrounding communities. The base number is like 500 thousand dollars for 9 communities, which is not a lot of money. That’s where we are right now is identifying what we have so that if we do have negative impacts we can quantify those and ask for reasonable mitigation.”
MGM Springfield was not on hand for tonight’s discussion, and declined to comment on the phone. MGM has a voter-approved plan to build a resort in Springfield, but it still needs to be approved by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.