Community Benefits Agreement ensures unprecedented and long-lasting commitments to local residents, businesses and communities
UPPER MARLBORO, MD – Today, County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III announced the signing of a historic Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) between Prince George’s County and MGM Resorts International that includes an ambitious commitment to hire county residents and ensure contracting opportunities for local businesses at the world class gaming facility and resort at National Harbor. Other highlights of the CBA include sustained charitable donations and educational opportunities for students and employees. In addition, the CBA opens up opportunities for County residents to invest in the project and institutes robust mechanisms for measuring and ensuring compliance with the agreement. The agreement is the result of months of negotiations between the County and MGM and goes above and beyond the local benefits and revenues already required by the state law authorizing gaming.
“After months of negotiating, I am proud to say that we have reached a deal with MGM that ensures this facility will have a transformative impact on our residents, businesses and communities,” said Baker. “The goals for local hiring and contracting in this agreement are both ambitious and fair. I want to thank MGM for their dedication to this County and am hopeful that the County Council will support this landmark agreement.”
The terms of the agreement establish a target of 40% of employees being county residents and veterans in years one and two, 45% in years three and four, and 50% in year five of operation as well as an aspirational goal of hiring county residents for 50% of all jobs at the facility by day one. The agreement also has a goal of hiring county residents for 20% of all construction jobs, with an aspirational goal of 30%. While the facility is in operation, MGM has committed to a best efforts goal of 20%--with an aspirational goal of 30%--of contracts being awarded to County-Based Minority Businesses (CMBE). During construction, MGM has agreed to use its best efforts to award 30% of contracts to Minority Business Enterprises (MBE), 12% to CMBEs, and 16% to local businesses (LBE), with aspirational goals of 35%, 15%, and 20%, respectively. The agreement spells out specific standards against which MGM’s ‘best efforts’ to achieve these goals are judged and includes a process to ensure compliance.
“Prince George’s County has never had an entity make a commitment of this scale in terms of bringing high quality and diverse jobs and contracting opportunities to our residents and businesses,” said Roland Jones, Acting Director of the Office of Central Services, which is the primary County agency responsible for increasing job opportunities for residents and growing the capacity of local and minority businesses. “We believe that MGM has set reasonable but aggressive targets for employment and contracting, which — combined with their job training and business development programs — will be a game-changer for our County.”
In addition to local hiring and contracting goals, the agreement sets up sustained philanthropic commitments. Before the opening of the facility, MGM has agreed to donate $1 million to local organizations that provide workforce training and to non-profits that benefit the County. After the opening, MGM will donate $400,000 each year, a funding commitment which—unlike most agreements for similar projects—does not expire. The Community Benefits Agreement also contains provisions for educational opportunities, youth internships, a high school culinary program, and contractor scale-up and mentoring programs.
The Community Benefit Agreement has been submitted to the County Council, where approval is required in order to allow for the issuance of use and occupancy permits for MGM. “My office held productive meetings with the County Council early on in this process, before MGM’s site plan was submitted, and their input was invaluable in forming the framework of this deal,” said Baker. “I want to thank the Council for their hard work and am hopeful that they will support this historic agreement.”
MGM Resorts International was awarded the State of Maryland’s 6th Gaming License by the Maryland Video Lottery Facility Location Commission in December of 2013 following a year-long competitive bidding process. The approximately $1 billion resort and casino will include a luxury hotel, restaurants, entertainment and retail and will generate over $40 million in estimated annual County revenue, $1.2 billion in projected State revenue over the first five years of operation, and approximately 4,000 direct permanent jobs. To read the full Community Benefits Agreement, follow this link.