OPINION | Barry Richard: Southeastern MA Left Out of Casino Debate
It has been six years since then-Governor Deval Patrick signed legislation expanding the state's gaming laws to include casino gaming. Southeastern Massachusetts remains on the sidelines.
The law that legalized casino gaming called for up to three casinos: one in Greater Boston (Region A), one in central / western MA (Region B), and the other in Southeastern MA (Region C). Casinos in the Boston area and in Springfield are nearing completion. The law also allowed for one slots parlor license - that license was granted to Plainridge Park Casino in Plainville. After a slow start, Plainville is bringing in better than expected revenue.
Under the law, here in Region C, preference for a casino siding was given to the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, which discouraged potential commercial investors. People from around here drive for casino gaming. There's no need to saturate the market. If the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe wants the casino, they should have to apply and compete for the same commercial license.