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East Boston Residents Speak Out Against Casino Proposal

BOSTON — Suffolk Downs’ owners have unveiled plans for a $1 billion resort-style casino at the horse-racing track.

The proposal for the 163-acre site includes 200,000 square feet of gaming space, including 200 table games and 4,000 to 5,000 slot machines, restaurants, entertainment venues, a hotel and the existing racetrack.

East Boston residents would have to vote in favor before the Suffolk Downs and its partner Caesars Entertainment can bid for a casino license from the state. Opponents are worried about traffic, crime, and real estate values.

Long-time East Boston resident and a founder of No Eastie Casino, Celeste Myers, joined WBUR’s Morning Edition to discuss her take on the project.

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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_N7VOTY7WU62AHDAGWR6HBGJ64Y ThomasB

    One of the radio stations did a poll this week and for what its worth, the public was opposing it by a count of two to one (70% against, 30% for). Oblivious to this fact, the Mayor sounds a lot like Deval Patrick when the latter said, in 2007, casinos would 1.      generate $2 billion for the state economy and 2.      add $400 million in annual casino revenue and 3.      $200 million in fees per license to the state coffers as well as 4.      add $50 million to $80 million in sales, meal, and hotel taxes. Patrick also said that casinos would create 30,000 construction jobs and 20,000 permanent jobs.and  that the revenue generated could be spent 1.      to beef up local law enforcement, 2.      create a state gambling regulatory agency, 3.      repair roads and bridges ($200 million), 4.      gambling addiction treatment ($50 million) and 5.      the remainder would go towards property tax relief.
    (its amazing what a sledgehammer to the kneecap can do).
    We all saw what happened to Sal DiMasi when he shot that one down, so noone should fault mumbles for going against public opinion (and common sense).
    Yes East Boston has just been sold, and maggots will have their usual feeding frenzy before things go back to normal.  If you want to know why Suffolk Downs hasn’t been doing well lately, and how it will be when the latest crop of maggots fly away to the next carcass, maybe you should have a look at a book called “My Life in the Mafia” by Vincent Teresa.
    There’s a right way and a wrong way to do everything, but as usual this has been the wrong way to cash in on addictions. Just as some people shouldn’t drink, or drug, or smoke, or drive cars for that matter, so too some people shouldn’t gamble and unfortunately, you will never see a valid study that says that any of these glitzy casinos can make a dime in profits without the problem gamblers.
    If you really want to bring in more money than goes out, build a high-roller casino into Fort Independence and make it off limits to locals.

  • anjie

    the local pols want the project so eastie residents are… S-O-L! 

  • Eastie Resident

    If you live in the Boston area and are against the casino, please sign this petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/we-don-t-want-a-casino-in-boston

    Then go share it with others. Thanks!

    • m.a.

      I WOULD LIKE THE CASINO.  BUT NOT IN EAST BOSTON.

      ANYWHERE BUT HERE.  I HAVE LIVED IN EAST BOSTON ALL MY LIFE
      62 YEARS.

      M. AMICO

  • Etc391

    Bring the casino! East Boston resident
    1. The state lottery has already addicted every person in Ma. who has an addictive personality. The new younger addicts will only replace the old addicts as they die off. Net gain of addicts will be minimal at best. No person can walk or drive anywhere for more than 5 minutes and gamble  now. Willing to bet at least 90 percent of opponents who cite addiction as a problem play the lottery on a regular basis.
    2. Crime – Law enforcement in East Boston has been extremely effective in reducing crime and I suspect they would be just as effective going forward.
    3. Traffic – There is a problem already. I am sure the money casino operators intend to pump into the infrastructure will clear up those problems as well as an overall improvement taking into consideration the increase in traffic generated by the casino.
    4. Bottom line – Net Gain   We need the jobs, the money the host communities will receive, the tax receipts and the money local businesses will generate. 

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