Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Peterson Cos. joins pro-casino funding fray

The Peterson Cos., master developer of National Harbor in Prince George’s County where a casino may be built if voters approve a sixth Maryland gambling site, has ponied up $400,000 to support a referendum campaign.

Milton V. Peterson is principal and chairman of the company and has publicly extolled his development as the perfect location for a resort casino since the 2012 General Assembly’s regular session.

Previously, only casino developer MGM Resorts International Inc. had put money into the state-monitored ballot issue issue committee For Maryland Jobs and Schools Inc. MGM, which has an agreement with Peterson to build a casino if voters OK the gambling expansion in November, has donated $5.4 million to influence the referendum.

On the other side of the issue, Penn National Gaming Inc. has spent $5.5 million on its committee, Get the Facts – Vote No on 7. Penn National opposes the gambling expansion in large part because its executives feel Rosecroft Raceway, which Penn National owns, will not be given a fair shot at being selected as the location for a Prince George’s casino.

“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 Kristen Hawn, spokeswoman for the pro-expansion effort.