Mohegan Sun, Foxwoods Reach Sports Betting and iGaming Deals with Connecticut
Posted on: March 18, 2021, 10:12h.
Last updated on: March 18, 2021, 12:54h.
Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods, the two tribal integrated casino resorts in Connecticut, have reached a deal with the state governor for sports betting and online gaming privileges.
After months of negotiations, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) today announced agreements with the Mohegan Tribe and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation to allow them to operate sportsbooks and iGaming.
Gross gaming revenue (GGR) from online casinos will be subject to an 18 percent tax for the first five years. That rate will increase to 20 percent thereafter. Sports betting retail and online will be taxed at a rate of 13.75 percent.
The tribes are not being afforded a monopoly when it comes to sports betting. Instead, the Connecticut Lottery has the right to authorize 15 retail sports betting locations, as well as online sports betting skin.
The gaming expansion agreement is good for 10 years, with an optional five-year extension. In part of the contract, the two tribes agree to halt development on their proposed joint satellite casino in East Windsor.
Lamont Claims Win-Win
In a release announcing the gaming expansion, Lamont said sports betting and iGaming will generate tens of millions of dollars in new tax revenue for the state. The first-term governor adds that it allows Connecticut’s gaming industry to remain competitive with neighboring states.
We have reached a good agreement, an agreement that allows the tribes to grow and prosper,” Lamont said today in Manchester. “It’s something that all of our neighbors are doing, and Connecticut is going to play. I think it’s a way to bring our cities and towns back to life, and represents some real revenue for the taxpayers.”
For the gaming expansion to become law, the matter must now go before the General Assembly for approval. If the legislature signs off, as it is expected to do, the US Department of the Interior would then review the tribes’ revised Class III gaming compacts for ultimate consent.
The tribes and State of Connecticut first reached Class III gaming compacts back in the 1990s.
Upper Hand on Massachusetts
Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods have seen their gaming revenues greatly decline over the past 15 years. Encroaching competition is the primary reason.
Casinos are today in all three of Connecticut’s neighboring states, inluding Rhode Island, New York, and Massachusetts. The latter has dealt a severe impact to Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods, specifically MGM Resorts’ $960 million casino in Springfield, Ma.
Located just miles north of the Connecticut-Massachusetts border, MGM Springfield gives Connecticut residents in the central and western part of the state a closer gaming option. However, with online gaming likely soon coming, those same people will be able to gamble through Mohegan Sun or Foxwoods from their own homes.
Additionally, Massachusetts has yet to legalize sports betting. That gives the Connecticut casinos another advantage.