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Other GTA municipalities consider casino bids

TORONTO – A major casino complex may be off the table in Toronto, but it could still be game-on elsewhere in the GTA.

The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. — while Paul Godfrey was chairman — had said that casino expansion would target regions outside of Toronto, if its city council rejected the possibility.

On Tuesday, Toronto city council voted 40-4 against a proposed downtown casino.

So the attention is now moving to Markham, or north to Vaughan or Mississauga.

The City of Markham appears to be first municipality to pick up the dice.

Markham regional councillor Jim Jones told the Toronto Sun his motion asking Markham council to consider a casino will be debated at the end of May.

He told the newspaper that he’s not talking about “just a slot box,” but the kind of significant investment that MGM and other gaming giants were prepared to put into Toronto.

MGM Toronto issued a statement that it is interested in building a GTA casino outside of Toronto, adding that it is willing to share its vision with a willing host in the GTA.

Mississauga Mayor Hazel McCallion told 680News Wednesday that her council hasn’t even considered the possibility of having a casino, partly because most, if not all of the land in Mississauga is privately owned.

“We still have over 3,000 acres — industrial/commercial — but we don’t own any of it. And I have not had anybody come to me with saying ‘we want to build a casino’ and give us a hand,” McCallion said.

Also, given the size of the complex the OLG is considering, she doesn’t know where a casino could be built.

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