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Casino Combatants Take Stock Following Hard Rock's Defeat

Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority

The focus of the casino competition in western Massachusetts shifts to Palmer following this week’s vote in West Springfield that killed one casino project.

   Jennifer Baruffaldi,spokesperson for a pro-casino group in Palmer said she is delighted to have Hard Rock removed as a competitor for the lone casino license available in western Massachusetts.

   Iris Cardin, co-chair of  an anti-casino group in Palmer, said it was heartening to see  the  grassroots activists in West  Springfield  defeat a casino industry giant at the polls.

   Palmer will vote on November 5th on Mohegan Sun’s plans for a $1 billion resort casino.  Voters in Springfield in July endorsed a casino project proposed by MGM.

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.