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New England News

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

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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.