Courtesy Mohegan Sun Palmer
Rendering of the proposed Mohegan Sun Massachusetts in Palmer

Fate of Mohegan Sun's Massachusetts Casino Rests in Palmer Voters' Hands


Tomorrow, November 5, is a make-or-break day for the Mohegan Tribe's proposed commercial casino in Western Massachusetts.

Eligible city voters must approve the planned $1 billion Mohegan Sun Palmer for the project to remain in the competition for the lone Western Massachusetts gaming license against MGM Resorts International, whose Springfield-based project was backed by voters in July. (MGM recently severed tied with Foxwoods Resort Casino, owned by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe. Foxwoods is also vying for a casino license in the state—the sole one in the Greater Boston area, pitching a $1 billion project in Milford, Massachusetts.)

RELATED: Foxwoods Parting Ways With MGM Resorts

The vote didn't turn out so well for the third company angling for the only Western Massachusetts casino license, one of three regional licenses to be awarded in the state. On September 18, the people of West Springfield shot down the Hard Rock New England project.

Mitchell G. Etess, the CEO of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, is hopeful Palmer voters will give Mohegan Sun the green light.

"I think we've been really committed to running a great campaign to make sure that everybody in Palmer has all the facts and everything they need to do to make a decision to allow Palmer to receive a once-in-a-lifetime chance for economic transformation," Etess told The Harford Courant.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will make the final license decision on the state's commercial gaming licenses in early 2014.