A new financial backer is coming to the aid of Mohegan Sun on the eve before a gaming fee is due.
The New York-based investment group, Brigade Capital Management, worth billions of dollars, will be partnering with Mohegan to make a $400,000 payment to the State Gaming Commission on time and invest in the project.
Mohegan Sun has owned 150 square miles of property off Route 32 for years and has had a presence in the town for several years.
But recent financial troubles, including laying off 300 workers from their Connecticut casino last fall, has worried some residents and town council members that the payment wasn't going to happen.
"My first reaction was one of pleasant surprise," said Town Council Member Paul Burns.
He has been a part of the casino development in palmer for four years.
He says the recent financial troubles have been worrying but the partnership is renewing his confidence.
"I kind of figured they were going to pay it but it had come right down to the wire and I know there were an awful lot of constituents who had concerns, and I had concerns myself. I think the better news was not just that they're paying the fee but they also have a partner with strong financial backing and they have literally billions of dollars available to help fund this project if needed," he said.
In a statement sent to CBS 3 Springfield Bruce "Two Dogs" Bozsum, Chairman of the Mohegan Tribal Council said:
"This is an important day for Mohegan Sun, for Western Massachusetts and the entire Commonwealth. Today, we take the next critical step in fulfilling our commitment to bringing new jobs and economic growth to the region."
All interested casino developers in western mass including MGM, Penn National and Hard Rock have all paid the $400,000 fee.
The State Gaming Commission will take five to nine months to review the phase one applications.
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