The Associated Press

Hard Rock Reaches Casino Deal With West Springfield

Rendering of Hard Rock's proposed West Springfield casino

Rendering of Hard Rock’s proposed West Springfield casino

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — West Springfield residents are expected to vote in September on a casino deal reached between Hard Rock and Mayor Gregory Neffinger.

The host community agreement announced Thursday calls for the company to make more than $40 million in advance payments to the city, including $35 million for transportation improvements. If the casino is built, Hard Rock promises to make minimum annual payments to the city of $18 million.

The company has proposed an $800 million resort casino at the Eastern States Exposition.

Voters must approve the agreement with the city before Hard Rock can apply to the state gambling commission for the sole western Massachusetts casino license allowed under the state’s expanded gambling law.

MGM Resorts in Springfield and Mohegan Sun in Palmer are also competing for the license.

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