It will be noisy in Hartford on Thursday when casino interests speak at a public hearing before the legislature’s Public Safety Committee considering a bill to create an open, competitive process based on MGM’s proposal to build a $675 million waterfront casino in Bridgeport. The state currently operates under a gaming monopoly that provides tribal-nation operators of Foxwoods and Mohegan exclusivity in exchange for 25 percent of the slot take. Opponents to monopolies assert the state is leaving loads of dough on the table. Meanwhile, unions are split on the proposed bill, some aligned with the tribal nations and others such as Peter Carroll, president of the Fairfield County Building Trades Council, enthusiastic supporters of a Bridgeport casino. It’s a complex issue.
More from CT Post reporter Dan Haar:
For the unions in Fairfield County–and UNITE HERE, which is aligned with MGM and has tens of thousands of unionized hotel, casino and food service workers in Las Vegas–the politics of what happens in East Windsor are less important than the chance to see a Bridgeport casino rise up.
“I don’t know how anybody could be opposed to creating 7,000 jobs and spending $675 million with no state dollars,” said Peter Carroll, business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers local 488 in Monroe, and president of the multi-union Fairfield County Building Trades Council.
He was referring to the MGM plan in Bridgeport. And the answer is, union backers of the East Windsor plan vehemently oppose revoking a bill they fought hard to pass from 2015 to 2017.
Full story here.