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Middleboro, Mass., eyes casino deal

Today's Boston Globe has the details of how the town of Middleboro, Massachusetts, appears to be closing in on a deal to host a casino:

The Middleborough Board of Selectmen has agreed to support an Indian-owned casino in exchange for a promise from developers to pay the town $7 million a year in compensation for accommodating the millions of expected visitors, according to town officials.

The agreement, if formally approved at a public board meeting tomorrow evening, would significantly advance the proposal of the Mashpee Wampanoag Indian tribe and its equity partners, Sol Kerzner and Len Wolman, the billionaire developers of Mohegan Sun in Connecticut.

As part of the deal, the tribe would be precluded from considering offers from other municipalities interested in having the casino, including New Bedford, where city officials had aggressively courted the Wampanoags.

Town Manager Jack Healey called the agreement "a great deal."

Meanwhile, the Globe previously reported on the casino wrangling in Mass., which is reminiscent of similar battles here in Rhode Island. 

With the state heavily dependent on gambling revenue, it won't be a surprise to see intensifying efforts to turn Twin River and Newport Grand into full-fledged casinos.

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