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Casino study was funded by expansion foe

A casino study released this week by the Maryland Public Policy Institute was paid for by a Washington lobbying firm that was hired by Penn National Gaming Inc., the only entity actively opposing Maryland’s expanded gambling law.

Christopher B. Summers, founder and president of the institute, had said the study was independent.

“We were not asked to produce the study, nor did an outside entity pay for the study,” Summers wrote in an email Monday. “As part of our mission statement, the Maryland Public Policy Institute does not perform contract research.”

But Joseph V. Kennedy, a visiting fellow with the institute and the economist who wrote the study, was paid for his work by the DCI Group. Penn National, in a disclosure form filed after the General Assembly’s special session on gambling, said it hired DCI for $1 million.

Kennedy then offered the study to the Maryland Public Policy Institute. Summers said he did not know Kennedy’s study was paid for by DCI until Wednesday morning.

“I didn’t get much sleep,” Summers said. He said the institute stood by the study’s numbers, adding that if they were obviously “cooked,” they would not have been published.

Kennedy is president of Kennedy Research LLC, a for-hire economic research firm.