Emergency response calls
The Tiverton Casino Hotel opened in Rhode Island in September 2018 and it has been operating 24 hours a day under a pilot program. The program ends after one year. The Town Council approved the pilot program after a public hearing, at which residents spoke both for and against the continual operations of the casino.
As the review time for the pilot program draws near, the police and fire department responses to the property are being considered. Calls to the property have reportedly increased over time.
As part of the review, the number of emergency calls to the property will be considered. So far this year, police have responded to the property a total of 361 times. According to Police Chief Patrick Jones, on-site incidents have increased. He pointed out that communication with personnel of the casino has issues that are being worked on.
The most recent reports of response calls for the fire and police departments are available from May. Police responded to the casino 72 times last month and five arrests were made as a result. From January through May, there were 361 police and fire calls and 34 people were arrested.
The fire department has been called to the casino due to incidents involving medical rescue or fires from discarded cigarettes. Each month this year, the fire department has been called to the site over 30 times.
Hours of operation consideration
Tiverton Casino is supposed to send quarterly reports to the Town Council under the host community agreement. However, such reports have not been provided, according to Councilwoman Denise deMedeiros.
Ms. deMedeiros said: “We were supposed to be getting quarterly reports. I don’t remember receiving any. The agreement was ‘let us know quarterly how it’s going.’”
Because the reports were not sent, it was assumed that everything was fine. Now, the members of the council have decided that the casino is to provide a quarterly report at the July 8 meeting. A follow-up will be scheduled so the public can weigh in on the casino being open 24 hours a day.
The hearing on the pilot program was scheduled to take place on August 26. Mark Russo, the attorney for Tiverton Casino, asked the council to schedule the required public hearing in advance of the request for a permanent license to remain open around the clock.
The council wants to ensure that the full year is completed before the license request is reviewed. The group wants to review the number and type of incidents that have taken place. Any action that needs to be taken to resolve such issues will also be considered.