DeLeo Wants Earlier Start On Casinos

Consideration of casino gambling legislation is back on Beacon Hill.

House Speaker Robert DeLeo wants lawmakers to get an early start on discussion of bringing casinos and slot parlors to Massachusetts.

"If we started earlier in the process as opposed to the final day," DeLeo said, "… I think that would give us a little more time to work out our differences, and I'm hopeful we'll get it done."

Gov. Deval Patrick vetoed gaming legislation last year in opposition to slot machines at racetracks.

This time around, DeLeo says he intends to work with the governor and the Senate president before any debate gets under way.

DeLeo also remains cool to the governor’s proposals to add a $2 fee to every auto insurance policy in the state and to expand the bottle bill, which would add a 5-cent deposit to tea, juice and water bottles.

"The budget that will come out will not have any new taxes, no additional fees, or any other gimmicks in terms of raising additional revenue," DeLeo said.

Patrick introduced these proposals in his budget plan in an effort raise revenue. The auto insurance fee would go to fund state police training and the additional bottle deposit would help fund recycling programs.

DeLeo said the House must take a thorough look at the governor's budget proposal.

This program aired on February 1, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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