Western Mass job seekers turn to casino opportunities - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

Western Mass job seekers, business owners turn to casino opportunities

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CHICOPEE, MA (WSHM) -

Some job seekers in Western Mass are turning to the casinos as a possibility to get employment.

Mohegan Sun is holding a series of workshops for people interested in jobs and also local business owners they may be able to partner with.

"If we were able to do that then we would be looking forward to hiring a lot more people," said the owner of Greenough Packaging & Maintenance Supplies, Craig Cassanelli.

The West Springfield business owner says if he could partner, with a Western Mass casino, he could expand his business and create more local employment.

"It would be huge for us. We would end up being able to hire probably half a dozen people," Cassanelli said.

Cassanelli was among the local business owners and job seekers at a meeting with Mohegan Sun reps about employment opportunities in Chicopee Tuesday night.

Peter Schultz of Mohegan Sun says that a Western Mass casino is guaranteed to bring growth.

"For the whole area, it's going to change the whole area and it's going to be very positive," Schultz said.

Each of the three companies proposing a casino in Western Mass are promising jobs to locals:

  • Mohegan Sun anticipates 2,000 construction jobs and 3,000 permanent jobs.
  • MGM, hoping to build in Springfield, is also anticipating 2,000 construction jobs and 3,000 permanent jobs.
  • Hard Rock in West Springfield is expecting 2,000 construction jobs and 3,500 permanent jobs.

Springfield-based contractor Hilton Woods says no matter which casino company comes to Western Mass, like many others, he wants an opportunity to work there.

"This is an opportunity. Work is really not so much out there ... hopefully down the road I can get some work," he said.

Mohegan Sun reps will have another career workshop in Holyoke on June 26 at the Holyoke Intermodal Center at 6 p.m.

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