7 casino firms submit initial applications in Mass.

Tuesday January 15, 2013

BOSTON (AP) -- The field of competitors for casino licenses in eastern and western Massachusetts took shape on Monday with several companies submitting initial applications along with nonrefundable $400,000 application fees in advance of a key deadline set by the state gaming commission.

Among them was Las Vegas casino developer Steve Wynn, who hopes to build a resort hotel and casino at the site of a former chemical plant in Everett, just north of Boston.

Also submitting a so-called Phase 1 application and paying the entry fee was Mohegan Sun, which has spent several years laying the groundwork for a resort casino in Palmer.

The commission said seven companies, including ones that had submitted applications previously, had met the panel’s deadline of 5 p.m. today.

The state’s 2011 casino law allows for up to three resort casinos in separate regions of the state and one slots parlor.

Wynn, whose prominent Las Vegas properties include the Bellagio, The Mirage and Treasure Island, secured a lease on the 37-acre site in Everett.

Also competing for the eastern Massachusetts casino license are the operators of Suffolk Downs. They have partnered with Caesar’s Entertainment for a proposed $1 billion resort at the site of the 77-year-old racetrack in East Boston.

Mohegan Sun on Monday formally joined three other companies competing for the Western Massachusetts casino license. MGM Resorts and Penn National Gaming have both proposed casinos in Springfield, and Hard Rock International on Friday announced plans to develop a resort at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield.


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