Peterson puts money behind casino expansion

Developer Milt Peterson will put $400,000 into an effort to expand gambling in Maryland, the first non-casino interest to write a check.

Peterson hopes to partner with gambling giant MGM Resorts International to build a resort-casino on the Potomac River. But first Maryland voters need to approve a referendum question in November that would authorize a sixth casino and table games all gambling locations.

"We believe Peterson's investment in Vote for 7 is particularly important given their first hand experience with the job growth and economic development that a project of this magnitude can bring to the region," said Kristin Hawn, a spokeswoman for Vote for 7, a committee supporting more gambling in the state. 

MGM has already put $5.4 million behind and effort to convince Marylanders to vote yes.

Penn National Gaming is funding an effort to oppose the ballot measure.

The new donation will bring the total spent on both sides to $11.3 million.

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