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Tribes say Lamont wants them to look at Bridgeport

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In an exclusive interview, the tribal chairman of the Mashantucket Pequot tribe,  Rodney Butler and the tribal chairman of the Mohegan tribe, Kevin Brown tell News 8 that Governor Lamont has asked them to
look into developing a casino/resort on the Bridgeport waterfront.  Something they say they have always had interest in.

“Yes, the Governor did actually reach out to us and say; ‘hey, you what? we think there’s an opportunity there and we think that we’d like to work with our current partners and would you be interested?’ And we said yes,” says Chairman Butler.  Chairman Brown adding,   “We are pleased to know that the Governor sees the value in the tribe’s being part of a discussion to do that development.”

The two tribal leaders say they are interested in protecting their franchise and reclaim business they’ve lost to other competitors in the Northeast.  Chairman Butler saying,  “Obviously, starting in the Northern part of the state to protect ourselves from the attack from the north in Springfield, but also to recaputure lost gaming that we’ve seen go by the way of Pennsylvania and New York. We’ve thought about something in the Sourthwest part of the state as well.”  Chairman Brown also saying,  “From the very beginning of this conversation about developing an off reservation casino in the state of Connecticut, we have always said from the begining and even had a proposal to possibly have as many as 3 locations throughout the state.”

And the Chairman Brown says, and Chairman Butler agreed, that they are ready to cut a deal on sports
betting, “It makes the most sense to go with current licensed operators in the state.  Now in this state, that is a population of four, a universe of four; the two tribes, the Connecticut State Lottery, and the OTBs.”

The tribes believe that their agreements with the state would pemit them to do sports betting if it became legal and would negotiate with the state the way they did with Keno.         

A spokesperson for Governor Lamont confirming the conversations about Bridgeport saying “the Governor talked to them, as he has with a number of stakeholders, about his vision for economic development in towns and cities across the state, including Bridgeport.”

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