Martin M Looney

Dan Haar: One-Time License Fee For East Windsor Casino Is State’s Latest Budget Football

Dan Haar: One-Time License Fee For East Windsor Casino Is State’s Latest Budget Football

In the mad rush to pass a casino bill, lawmakers glossed over one detail that could have a big effect on the state budget.

The General Assembly didn't fully debate and resolve whether the state would charge the Mashantucket Pequots and Mohegans a one-time fee to open a casino in East Windsor. Figures as high as $250 million and as low as $25 million, or perhaps zero, were bandied about.

The final bill contains no payment for the exclusive right; a companion bill includes a $30 million advance from the tribes to the state.

Now the fee is back in play as an element of the ongoing, closed talks to eliminate a $2.3 billion shortfall in the fiscal year that starts in less...

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