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State Senator

Cathy Osten

Representing Columbia, Franklin, Hebron, Lebanon, Ledyard, Lisbon, Marlborough, Montville, Norwich & Sprague

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Sen. Osten Unveils Casino Jobs and Revenue Bill for 2020 Legislative Session

HARTFORD – State Senator Cathy Osten (D-Sprague), a longtime advocate for protecting Connecticut jobs and growing Connecticut revenue, today unveiled a working draft of her new 2020 bill, “An Act Concerning Jobs In and Revenue From the Gaming Industry,” which seeks to expand and grow Connecticut jobs in the gaming and entertainment industry while securing more gaming revenue for Connecticut’s cities and towns.

Sen. Osten was joined today at her announcement by a bipartisan group of legislators who support the bill and its goals.

“As I have been saying for some time now, Connecticut needs to embrace and promote two of the largest employers in our state – the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes – with the same fervor and conviction that we have embraced the aerospace industry, advanced manufacturing, and biotech. It’s a matter of fairness and respect for an industry that that I believe is long overdue. So, first and foremost, this bill does that, it embraces job growth in the gaming industry” Sen. Osten said.

“Secondly, with the expansion of gaming and entertainment in Connecticut comes the responsibility, I believe, for the two tribes to share some of that wealth with Connecticut’s cities and towns. And this bill does that too,” Sen. Osten continued. “We plan on distributing $88 million more in gaming revenue to all Connecticut cities and towns – that’s up from the current $51 million – with the possibility of another $25 million or so for several targeted, impacted communities. So on top of the all new jobs for the state and the economic boost that will generate, we will be distributing more tribal funds to Connecticut cities and towns than we do now.”

“And lastly, there is accountability in this bill in that we ask DMHAS to create a new program for the treatment and rehabilitation of compulsive gamblers in this state – with that program to be funded by fees from gaming operators – and for the Department of Consumer Protection to increase its outreach on compulsive gambling,” Sen. Osten said. “All in all this is a very comprehensive bill, it’s a very forward-looking bill, it has a lot of moving parts, but in the end this is a job-creator and a revenue-enhancer for the State of Connecticut, and that is something that we need right now as well as going forward into the future. It’s a bill with great bipartisan support in the legislature that should be passed and signed into law as soon as possible.”

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