Palmer voters reject Mohegan Sun casino plan

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PALMER, Mass. (AP) -- Voters in Palmer have rejected Mohegan Sun's plan for a $1 billion resort casino and entertainment complex.
 
The town clerk says the proposal lost by 93 of the 5200 total votes cast.
   
That deals a crushing blow to the Connecticut casino operator's hopes of applying to the state's gambling commission for the sole western Massachusetts casino license allowed under the state's 2011 gambling law.
   
A host community agreement reached between Mohegan Sun and Palmer officials in August called for more than $16 million in annual payments to the town.
   
Supporters of the proposed casino said it would be a catalyst for an economic revival in a town that has seen manufacturing jobs disappear in recent decades.
   
Opponents said it would lead to traffic congestion and destroy the rural character of the town.