Poll: New Bedford supports a casino
By Richard Asinof Contributing Writer
DARTMOUTH – A new poll shows increased public support among residents of New Bedford to build a new gambling casino there, according to results released Monday by the Center for Policy Analysis at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.
The survey, which sampled 603 New Bedford residents, found that 63 percent of New Bedford residents favor locating a casino there, and with 58 percent favoring locating a casino in the Hicks-Logan area of the city, at the intersection of Interstate 195 and Route 18.
Clyde W. Barrow, director of the Center for Public Analysis, who supervised the polling, said that it showed support for the casino has definitely increased during the last two years. In July 2008, the center conducted an identical poll which found that 53 percent of New Bedford residents favored hosting a resort casino, while 51 percent favored locating such a casino in the Hicks-Logan area of the city, according to Barrow.
The 2010 research was commissioned and paid for by Citizens for a Hicks-Logan Casino. The 2008 research was commissioned and paid for by the Northeast Resorts Group in East Longmeadow, Mass., which has the options for the land in the Hicks-Logan area. “We used the same questions for accurate and valid comparisons to track changes,” Barrow said.
“A resort casino in the city of New Bedford would be well positioned to recapture the more than $200 million that leaves Southeastern Massachusetts annually for Rhode Island’s slot parlors and to compete for the additional $230 million that Rhode Islanders currently spend at Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun,” Barrow said. These figures were taken from the center’s New England Casino Gaming Update, he said, which was released in late March.
The 2010 results to the question, “Do you support or oppose locating a resort casino in New Bedford, or are you undecided?” were 63 percent in support, 16 percent opposed, and 21 percent undecided.
The 2010 results to the question, “Do you support or oppose locating a resort casino in the Hicks-Logan area of New Bedford, or are you undecided?” were 58 percent in support, 21 percent opposed, and 21 percent undecided.
The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent.