Mayor, meets with speaker, other mayors on gaming bill

March 30, 2011
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Mayor Judith Flanagan Kennedy and a host of other mayors met in a behind the door session with Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo at a location in North Revere last week.

The discussion, which was not open to the press, was about an expanded gaming bill and of the possibility of casinos.

Speaker DeLeo said he was ready to pass an expanded gambling bill if the governor was ready to sign it.

In fact, DeLeo told the Journal that he and Governor Deval Patrick would likely be meeting this week to discuss the matter.

Both the governor and DeLeo have been privately and publicly posturing about a renewal of the failed effort that killed the bill last year.

The governor has said consistently that DeLeo has to send him a bill that he will sign which means that DeLeo’s bill must be without no bid contract awards for slot machines to any of the state’s tracks.

Flanagan-Kennedy apparently told the speaker that unemployment is high and that the North Shore needs job creation.

Indeed.

Job creation is the governor’s main priority, that, and creating new streams of tax revenue to off-set the effects of the recession and rising costs for state services.

It is estimated that a casino at Suffolk Downs by itself – which is a real possibility if the state allows expanded gambling – would result in the creation of thousands of jobs and a huge stream of new tax revenue when up and running.

It is believed that the speaker will negotiate an expanded gambling bill with the governor in the days to come.

However, the governor has made it clear that the bill will be what he wants or it won’t come to pass.

Recent comments from the speaker make it clear that he is ready to deal with the governor.

A casino at Suffolk Downs would be a boost to the local economy, it is believed.

The job creation there could mean real employment for Lynners out of work and for trades people from Lynn either out of work or seeking more work.

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