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Casinos Want To Reopen Craps And Roulette Tables After Promising First Weeks Back

In the three weeks since the slots parlor and casinos in Massachusetts began reopening, there have been very few incidents related to the pandemic-related health and safety measures imposed by the Gaming Commission and now the casinos are asking to be allowed to offer more games.

Loretta Lillios, chief enforcement counsel of the commission's Investigations and Enforcement Bureau, reported Thursday that the number of incidents in which the commission's enforcement unit has had to step in "can be counted on one hand."

"All the reports have been very positive. There's been an all hands on deck approach for all three of the licensees with a high level of on-the-ground engagement from casino employees, including management level on the casino floor actively engaged in reminding guests, for instance, whose masks fall below the nose to pull them up," she told the commission. "And there's also been, overall, a high level of cooperation from guests as well, with few problems around health and safety measures."

Lillios said that the two licensees with tables games — MGM Springfield and Encore Boston Harbor in Everett — have requested that the commission allow them to offer craps and roulette, both of which are dice games currently prohibited under the commission's reopening guidelines.

"We are working through those requests now. The agents are working on understanding the prototype to use plexi[glass] on the games, whether the seated option is viable and would enhance safety, they're also looking at the question of proximity issues, taking into account the players and staff," Lillios said. "It's something that we expect you would evaluate substantively at a later meeting in August."

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