An analysis by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education estimates development of the Milford casino will result in a nearly $3 million loss each year in state aid to the town for education.
The reason is because the state aid, which flows to towns through the Chapter 70 law, is intended to help less-wealthy communities meet the minimum threshold for adequate student funding. As a community's wealth increases, the state aid decreases. The loss in state aid for general government has not yet been calculated.
The casino is expected to add another $635 million to the Milford total property value. If so, this would result in a decrease of $2.7 million a year in state aid through Chapter 70, said Roger Hatch, an administrator for school finance at the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.
The property tax benefit to the community as a result of the casino, initially estimated by Foxwoods Massachusetts in community meetings as $19 million, and described in its fliers as $20 million, is now $18 million under the draft host agreement.
Milford Selectmen in a meeting on Monday are expected to discuss the draft agreement for the first time. The selectmen meet at 7 p.m. at Town Hall. The meeting will be televised on Milford TV.
Chairman Bill Buckley said Sunday that the loss in state aid was not included in the economic analysis conducted by the casino consultants, or evaluated by the town's consultants. The overlooked impact is the result of a rushed process, Buckley said. "This is the problem with working fast," he said.
"We need to understand the true, economic impact of a casino scenario, and a non-casino scenario," he said.