BOSTON — Following the election of two anti-casino selectmen in a town vote Monday night, Las Vegas casino developer Steve Wynn and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft have suspended plans for a casino in Foxborough.
The Kraft Group, which would have leased land to Wynn Resorts for the proposed $1 billion casino, said “the citizens of Foxborough have spoken.”
“As we originally committed, we have heard them and respect their collective voice,” the group said in a statement. “With that democratic statement, as opposed to the voices of five individuals, we will be suspending our efforts regarding a destination resort development.”
In December, the Foxborough Board of Selectmen voted 3-2 against hosting a casino there.
Wynn Resorts, in a separate statement, said it “respects the outcome” of Monday’s election.
“For the past six months, Wynn Resorts has sought to communicate the benefits of a proposed destination resort in Foxborough,” Wynn Resorts said. “[Monday's] election demonstrates the community’s will and Wynn Resorts respects the outcome.”
According to the AP, a spokesman “did not immediately return a call for comment on whether [suspending the casino plan] means the proposal might come up again.”
The law that legalized gambling in Massachusetts states that a developer must first negotiate with a city or town before seeking a gaming license from the state.
Update at 1:45 p.m.: WBUR’s Curt Nickisch just tweeted:
With Foxboro casino out, East Boston casino has inside track. Upshot? Suffolk Downs may offer Commonwealth fewer $’s and still win license.
— Here’s the Kraft Group’s full statement:
When the Commonwealth of Massachusetts passed gaming legislation, we brought forth an opportunity with the unquestioned premier developer and operator in the industry. We have the greatest respect for Steve Wynn, his team and his business model, and believe this unique opportunity was worthy of a chance to be heard. With Monday’s election, we believe the citizens of Foxborough have spoken. As we originally committed, we have heard them and respect their collective voice. With that democratic statement, as opposed to the voices of five individuals, we will be suspending our efforts regarding a destination resort development. We thank all of the residents who reached out and participated in a dialogue about the future of the Town and thank Wynn Resorts for their interest in Foxborough.
— Here’s the full Wynn Resorts statement:
For the past six months, Wynn Resorts has sought to communicate the benefits of a proposed destination resort in Foxborough. Yesterday’s election demonstrates the community’s will and Wynn Resorts respects the outcome. We would like to thank all the Foxborough residents who supported the proposed resort and reached out to discuss the opportunity. We also would like to extend our gratitude to Robert Kraft and The Kraft Group for the introduction to the Town of Foxborough and support on this project.