Springfield Chamber of Commerce endorses MGM Springfield casino plan, urges ‘yes’ vote
SPRINGFIELD?– The Board of Directors of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce has endorsed the MGM Springfield proposal, urging “yes” vote on Tuesday’s referendum question.
Chamber Executive Director Jeffrey S. Ciuffreda said Thursday’s announcement is a clarification of an early chamber decision to back the concept of a Springfield casino. The chamber took that position before the city chose MGM Resorts International as its entry into the Western Massachusetts casino derby.
“”We clearly felt the good outweighed the bad,” Ciuffreda said after announcing the endorsement Thursday morning.
The Springfield Chamber is part of the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield. This announcement, though, is only from the 550-member Springfield Chamber.
The affiliated East of the River Five Town Chamber has met extensively with the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority regarding its proposal in Palmer on behalf of its 225 members.
Ciuffreda said the Affiliated Chambers has 40 to 50 members in West Springfield and Agawam. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino New England has proposed a casino for the Eastern States Exposition Grounds in West Springfield.
“We have been meeting with Hard Rock,” Ciuffreda said.
The West of the River Chamber of Commerce, which is not part of the Affiliated Chambers following a split, has endorsed the Hard Rock proposal and is actively helping Hard Rock promote the project, said executive director Debra A. Boronski.
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