Susan Bigelow is an award-winning columnist and the founder of CTLocalPolitics. She lives in Enfield with her wife and their cats.
These days, I feel like going to a casino and blowing my paycheck on a greasy slot machine. I want to be at a blackjack table surrounded by bitter high school teachers with voices like sandpaper and comp tickets to Dawson’s Creek on Ice. My luck’s gotta turn at some point, right?
I might as well get ready to put all my money on red, because we’re about to have a serious glut of casinos around here. Springfield’s scaled-down but still grossly outsized MGM casino is on track to open sometime next year; the parking garage has already risen along Union Street while the steel skeleton for the hotel and casino floor crouches, hulking, on the rest of a blasted piece of dirt that used to be several city blocks.
Then there’s the spite casino promised by the nice folks from the Mohegan and the Mashantucket Pequot tribes. They’re currently scrambling to find a town desperate enough to buy their promises of jobs and tourism, and they may have found that town in East Windsor. There, people are actually enthusiastic about turning a hollowed-out old Showcase Cinemas into a casino. Why? Jobs! It’ll put the town on the map! It’s 12 entire miles down the highway from Springfield!
Casinos can sometimes help the economy, but that’s in cases where there’s no other casinos nearby. In our case, the casino market is pretty saturated already, and the addition of two new casinos so close to one another will just make that worse. This is like having a Starbucks across the street from a Dunkin Donuts in a small town where only a small fraction of the people drink coffee every day.
Read the full story at CT News Junkie.