Yesterday, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission decided to renew the operating license of the Plainridge Park Casino that five years ago became the first property to start operating under the expanded gambling legislation of the state.
The decision was made unanimously by the regulatory body’s members. It extends the operating license of Plaindirge Park Casino by five years. This is the first time in the history of the state’s gambling commission to reauthorize a casino venue. For the time being, there are two casinos that are larger than Plainridge Park – MGM Springfield and Everett’s Encore Boston Harbor – both of which opened later.
Now, the Plainridge Park Casino, which also hosts a simulcast venue and a harness racing track, will be forced to continue its operation without one of its key leaders. Yesterday, Penn National Gaming that owns the gambling establishment, revealed that the long-time general manager of the property Lance George is stepping down from his position at the venue.
As shared by Penn National Gaming, Mr. George is set to take over one of the biggest properties of the company, the Argosy Casino Hotel and Spa situated in close proximity to Kansas City. His lead role at Plainridge Park Casino is to be taken in the upcoming months by North Groundsell, who is serving as an assistant general manager at one of the Colorado-based gambling properties of Penn National.
Lengthy Process of Consideration and Discussion Preceded the Casino License Renewal
The Chief Executive Officer of Penn National Gaming, Jay Snowden, issued a statement to share his appreciation for the recent decision made by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. He explained that the state’s gambling regulatory body has set high standards regarding the integrity of racing and gaming in the state and his company could only pledge to remain true to these principles over the next five years and beyond.
At the end of June 2020, Plaindirge Park Casino revealed it had 413 employees, despite the fact that many of them were on furlough considering the massive shutdown across the industry that was brought to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus pandemic. More recently, the casino establishment’s owner revealed that it had parted ways with some of the employees who remained on furlough after the Plainridge Park Casino got official permission to resume operation at reduced capacity after the state authorities decided to ease the social distancing and lockdown measures.
The decision of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission to renew the operating license of the casino property came after a lengthy process including several community meetings, an extensive discussion process within the gambling regulatory body, and a public hearing.
The Chairwoman of the Massachusetts gambling regulatory body, Cathay Judd-Stein, confirmed the decision of the Commission to renew the license of Plainridge Park Casino. She described the move as an important milestone for both the gambling venue and the Commonwealth since Plainridge has become the first casino to be relicensed under the existing Expanded Gaming Act of 2011.