Holyoke City Council meets 1st time since casino announcement - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

Holyoke City Council meets for 1st time since casino announcement

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HOLYOKE, MA (WSHM) -

Holyoke City Council met for the first time since Mayor Alex Morse announced he is now in favor of having a casino in the city.

The mayor had plans of creating a community committee that would handle casino developments. But Tuesday night a majority of city councilors delayed making that committee.

Fallout continued at the meeting where residents were given the floor to speak up about the city's recent casino ambitions. All but one person were against a casino.

Many residents said it's all happening too fast.

"This is happening very quickly, it's happening unexpectedly and seemingly without preparation," said John Epstein.

But City Council President Kevin Jourdain says the community committee the mayor wants to form would be beneficial to the entire city to get some of their questions answered.

"Have these people in, be able to question them and then have the citizens come in and be able to ask questions and give feedback," Jourdain said.

Nine city councilors voted to send the proposal to make a casino committee to the charter and rules committee to be discussed next week.

So far there are three proposed sites: the Wykoff country club site, Mountain Park off route 141 and one for downtown near the canals.

Some residents say whether you're for a casino or not, they want the process slowed down.

"I'm concerned that we're flying through this and I don't know how anyone can expect a cautious or a good result," Epstein said.

Morse also sent out letters to mayors from surrounding cities to schedule a meeting to discuss casino matters.

That will be on Dec. 13 or 14.

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