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Legislators pass a bill to expand gambling in the state

Legislators pass a bill to expand gambling in the stateā€

A third tribal casino in CT is getting closer to becoming a reality. Some legislators supported the tribes' proposal in an effort to protect jobs at their southeastern CT casinos and other lawmakers wanted to create an open casino bidding process that could lead to other casino developers possibly building gambling facilities elsewhere in CT.

On Monday, a bill to require the Division of Criminal Justice to compile a preliminary report within 40 days after a deadly police shooting was tabled in the House and last week a debate on whether undocumented immigrant students should have access to the college financial aid pool into which they pay with their tuition was tabled in the Senate.

House Majority Leader Matt Ritter, a Democrat who represents Hartford, said he doesn't believe gaming in his city will provide economic answers.

The state of CT takes another major step forward in building a casino between Hartford and Springfield to compete with MGM. "With this vote, we have all demonstrated a commitment to protecting the state of CT and the good jobs of its residents", he said. According to the House Democratic Chairman of the Public Safety Committee Joe Verrengia, Rep-West Hartford, such a step could lead to some legal challenges over the upcoming years. As reported by The Connecticut Mirror, the bill would relax the state's restrictions on MMA fights that have made it unfeasible for promoters to stage such matches in the state.

The Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot Tribes have argued that the East Windsor gaming establishment is necessary to protect the state's economy and revenue from competition posed by MGM Springfield. Those provisions imposed higher levels of health insurance coverage for MMA fighters than for boxers, plus a gross receipts tax.

The top Republican in the Connecticut House said the bill to support when it comes to casino expansion is the one backed by the state's two tribes that already operate a pair of casinos in southeastern Connecticut.

The bill would allow CT to prepare for on-line sports better if federal restrictions are lifted by Congress, she said.

The General Assembly is also in talks to allow for slot machines to be loccated in off-track betting facilities in New Haven, Bridgeport and Waterbury, as well as what's being described as a "Boutique Casino" in Hartford.



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