“The governor said ‘no,’” Osten said, adding that the ruling parties in the House, Senate, and governor’s office “sort of have veto authority” when crafting a budget implementer. Compensation for East Windsor was to come from the Mashantucket Pequot/Mohegan Fund, grants that are distributed annually to each of the state’s 169 towns.
The grant program was initially designed to provide money to towns — and not the General Fund — which Osten said she believes is what Gov. Ned Lamont’s office is planning. He added that the massive, multibillion-dollar budget would hardly be impacted by $3 million per year, and that the state would pay nothing if the East Windsor property sold within the year.
“Why would a sitting governor of a state kill a project that was going to create 2,000 jobs in construction and 2,000 jobs when (the casino) is functioning, and then when the town is hurt and we want to try to make the town whole, would block it,” Anwar asked. “Going against your own town, in your own state, and trying to harm it is something that I have not been able to understand yet.” Further, Anwar noted, the funding would have come from new revenue generated through expanded gambling, not new taxes.
Sen. M. Saud Anwar, D-South Windsor, along with other state and local leaders, still question why the East Windsor casino project had to be halted for at least 10 years as part of a new gambling agreement with the tribes. “They don’t believe in the policy of getting money to the towns through the Pequot Fund,” she said. “They want to keep it for the General Fund. That’s my assumption.”
“The payment to East Windsor was not included in the budget that passed in a bipartisan manner,” he said as the reasoning the governor’s office vetoed the East Windsor funding. Despite the implementer containing several provisions that were not related to the budget and received widespread bipartisan support, Lamont spokesman Max Reiss said the East Windsor funding was excluded because it wasn’t part of the original budget.
“They know that I’m bringing it back next year,” she said, noting that the Tribal Winds Casino in East Windsor was “passed by the legislature and has been negated by the governor.” Regardless, Osten, who was outspoken in her support for East Windsor while speaking on the floor when the Senate voted last month to approve expanded gambling, said she’s committed to continue pushing for significant financial compensation for the town. Several Senate Republicans voted against the implementer on Tuesday after supporting the budget, specifically because it included provisions not related to the budget.
News Highlights Business
- East Windsor Casino Money Removed from Budget Execution Bill | Politic and government
- Check all news and articles from the Business news updates.
Disclaimer: If you need to update/edit/remove this news or article then please contact our support team.