Mass. voters to elect selectmen who will decide fate of casino

May 7, 2012 9:28 AM

Last week, Steve Wynn scored a coup when Macau officials agreed to approve his application for a 51-acre piece of real estate on the Cotai Strip for casino development.

Monday, the voters of Foxborough, Massachusetts, elect two new Selectmen who will vote on whether the town should further discuss the application of Wynn Resorts Ltd. for a casino in that town.

As it stands, selectmen have voted 3-2 against further casino talks. Town approval is required by state legislation that authorizes three casinos licenses.

Of the four candidates seeking office on Monday, two favor further talks with Wynn while the other two do not. Without such talks, there can be no agreement with the full board of selectmen, therefore the project cannot go forward.

The casino law, granting ,in effect, the authority of approval to the local governments was no accident, explained a gaming expert.

“That was the intent of the (law),” said Clyde Barrow, director of the Center for Policy Analysis at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth. He added, “primarily because there was so much concern about a casino being forced on a community without its consent.”

Already, Hard Rock International was forced to rethink its plan for a casino in Holyoke when that city’s mayor expressed his opposition.