Exclusive Content   Join Now

Casino deal may get second look in Massachusetts

Jan 2, 2009 5:00 PM

by Kevin Stott |

Officials in Middleborough, Massachusetts are trying to revisit a multi-million casino contract they negotiated with the Wampanoag Tribal Council last year, The Boston Globe reports.

Town officials want to revisit the multi-million dollar casino contract with the Wampanoag Tribal Council which was negotiated last year, saying their faith in the proposed deal was rattled by an ongoing federal investigation and charges that then former tribal chairman, Glenn A. Marshall, engaged in fraud and embezzlement.

After some members of the Board of Selectmen said the contract’s "good faith and fair dealing" provision may have been breached by the formal tribal chairman, the board unanimously voted to review the agreement at a meeting with the tribal council in March after new tribal elections are held on Feb. 8.

Town officials revealed that they want to revisit the deal after Marshall, 59, was charged with steering tens of thousands of dollars in illegal campaign contributions to state and federal politicians and embezzling some $380,000 in tribal money which he reportedly spent on groceries, trips and jewelry.

Marshall has agreed to plead guilty to the charges and said he will cooperate with the investigation.

Described by some as the richest casino deal for any municipality in the USA, the agreement paves the way for a $1 billion casino by promising the town $7 million in cash payments, plus revenues from a 4 percent lodging assessment on a planned 1,500-room hotel. It also promises that the tribe will make improvements to town roads and other infrastructure for the casino and make a one-time $2 million payment for police and ambulance services.

The Tribe has already begun to make some of these payments.