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With MGM Casino Opening In 18 Months, Springfield Prepares To Post More Cops Downtown


With the opening of the MGM Springfield casino 18 months away, plans are in the works to put more police downtown.

Police Commissioner John Barbieri said 35 additional officers and 7 supervisors will be assigned to a new community policing detail in the Metro Center sometime prior to the casino opening in September 2018. 

There will be a new police substation downtown and four kiosks where cops will be posted around the clock.

" The goal here is perception of police presence," said Barbieri.

MGM is paying Springfield $1.5 million a year toward public safety.   The money has allowed the city to increase the number of officers in uniform to more than 400 for the first time in decades.