Wynn-Lose Casino Bid in Boston Dailies

July 20, 2014

From our One Town, Two Different Worlds desk

In Boston’s ongoing Casino Roulette, the latest Wynn Resorts offer got very different reactions in the local dailies.

Boston Globe:

Wynn makes offer to Boston

Proposal is richest to a city near planned Everett casino

Wynn Resorts has offered the City of Boston $1 million upfront and $2.6 million annually, along with hiring preferences for city bbcfcc7493b24cd4be382d27cbf275be-bbcfcc7493b24cd4be382d27cbf275be-0residents, as compensation to offset the possible effects of a planned hotel and gambling resort on the Mystic River waterfront in Everett.

It is the richest deal Wynn offered to any community around the company’s planned resort, but far less than the $18 million annual payment promised to Boston by a rival applicant, Mohegan Sun, which is proposing a Revere casino.


Right – far less, as the Boston Herald headlined:

Wynn offer pales beside Sun’s

Rejected Everett deal a fifth of Mohegan’s

The best-and-final offer Wynn Resorts made to Boston — but Mayor Martin J. Walsh rejected — to soften the impact of the casino it IMG_8716.JPGwants to build in Everett called for $6 million in one-time payments and $2.6 million annually, according to a copy of the deal obtained by the Herald.

The cash pales in comparison to the $30 million upfront and minimum annual $18 million pledged to Boston by rival Mohegan Sun for a gaming resort on the Revere side of Suffolk Downs.


That’s the local dailies in a nutshell: Sunny-side-up Globe, sunny-side-down Herald.


Hay Is for Herald

March 19, 2014

The feisty local tabloid is quite the frontrunner in today’s edition.


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Story inside:

Historic barns may stall bid

Possible hitch in Suffolk’s casino plan

Rows of decrepit, manure-strewn racehorse barns could pull the reins on Suffolk Downs’ casino dreams, after the Massachusetts Historic Commission threw up a roadblock on their proposed demolition in a landmark claim development experts say could be costly and time-consuming at best — and a ASTU8978.JPGproject-killer at worst.

Suffolk Downs wants to demolish 30 wood-frame horse stables and a pony barn on the Revere side of the track to make way for the casino. It plans to move the barns to the East Boston side of the track, where the art deco clubhouse, grandstand and racetrack are located, all of which were built in 1935 and are listed in a state inventory of historic landmarks.


Not so fast, pony boys.

Commission director Brona Simon sent  a letter to state environmental secretary Richard Sullivan saying her staff has “determined that the proposed demolition and new construction will have an ‘adverse effect’ … on the historic Suffolk Downs through the demolition of all or part of the property and the introduction of visual elements that are out of character with and will alter the setting of the property.”

Translation: We just opened the family-size can of worms.

Crosstown, meanwhile, the story failed to place or show in the Boston Globe.

No high horse for the Globeniks today, eh?


Hail (and Farewell) Caesars!

November 5, 2013

Monday’s Boston Globe went all in covering today’s East Boston Casino vote. The stately local broadsheet started with this front-page piece:

Neighbor vs. neighbor over East Boston casino


For years, only a wrought iron fence stood between Gail Miller and Pat Benti, a pair of friendly neighbors on Orient Avenue, but now their yards are a testament to the deep political chasm that has opened between them.

Miller has plastered her property with signs urging a “no” vote on a Suffolk Downs casino, fearing it would attract more woes than riches.

Right next door, Benti has put up procasino placards, touting the project as a way to save the historic racetrack and bring jobs to East Boston.

“It definitely has caused some stress among friends and neighbors,” said Miller, who dropped Benti as a Facebook friend “just until this is over.”

With Tuesday’s critical East Boston referendum looming, polling suggests the neighborhood is as divided on the casino as the next-door neighbors.


Then there was this streetside sidebar:

As big vote approaches, casino friends and foes take to streets

The chief operating officer of Suffolk Downs clambered atop a desk in a former insurance office to rally his troops Sunday morning.

“We’re in the home stretch, as they say in horse racing,” Chip Tuttle, 50, told about four dozen volunteers and staff packed into an Orient Heights storefront. “We can see the wire.”turner110313METROcasino35

More than 250 canvassers spent Sunday knocking on doors across East Boston and Revere, trying to shore up votes before the Tuesday election that will decide the fate of a $1 billion casino proposed for Suffolk Downs’ site at the border of the communities.

At the other end of East Boston, casino opponents held a rally that drew about 80, many with small children in tow.

Celeste Ribeiro Myers, a leader of the No Eastie Casino group, led an impassioned military-style chant: “We don’t want slots or roulette. Casino is a losing bet.”


Cut to the op-ed page for Marcela García’s piece:

Scars in East Boston

The casino vote has caused deep divisions in the Latino community


THE EAST Boston casino campaign will be a benchmark in the emergence of Boston’s Latino community. But as the race nears the finish line, the casualties and accusations are piling up. Opponents are ripping down each others’ campaign signs with abandon while each side tries to catch the other on video doing it; a casino supporter suffered a broken nose at a contentious rally, and pro- and anti-casino advocates regularly malign each other in Spanish on Facebook.

The animosity may be on the verge of going international, for there are calls to remove the Salvadoran consul for meddling in a local political matter.

That there’s no love lost between the two sides is the understatement of the year, and even though no one knows how the vote will go down, on one level, an ingrained bitterness means the community overall already has lost.


Among all that back-and-froth in the Globe, perhaps most interesting was this ad that ran at the bottom of page 4:


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Oddly, the ad did not run in the Boston Herald.

Maybe Herald readers have no need to know that Caesars has left the building.

Or maybe . . . what?

Herald Doubles Down on Boston Casino Coverage

August 29, 2013

This is what the Boston Herald lives for.


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Our feisty local tabloid devotes nearly four full pages to the casino-industrial complex today.


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Corruption! Rampant patronage! Zero accountability!

For the Herald, this deal is the grift that keeps on giving.

Crosstown, by contrast, the Boston Globe has this nothingburger of a story in today’s Metro section:


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Aside from some mild finger-wagging by columnist Adrian Walker over Boston Mayor Tom Menino’s ram-rodding this deal through, our stately local broadsheet has had nary a discouraging word about the proposed billion-dollar gambling hell – sorry, hall.

C’mon, Globeniks – get on this stick. Where’s that righteous indignation about gambling? Or even some of your trademark tsk-tsking?

You gonna let the Herald have all the fun?


Suffolk Downs Casino: Dailies Play the Numbers Game

August 28, 2013

The Boston Herald and the Boston Globe do casino-half-full/casino-half-empty in today’s editions.

The Globe:


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The story itself gives a more detailed set of numbers.

A Suffolk Downs casino would pay Boston at least $32 million annually — and potentially far more — while guaranteeing at least 4,000 permanent jobs and providing East Boston an upfront payment of $33.4 million, under an agreement signed Tuesday with Mayor Thomas M. Menino.

The deal includes provisions that would substantially increase the annual payment to the city if the casino is highly profitable. Under those provisions, the deal could be worth $52 million for Boston annually, based on projections from a city consultant that the resort would gross $1 billion per year in gambling revenue.


Crosstown, those eternally optimistic Heraldniks go for the big score:


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You need to go down to this graphic to get the more modest number.


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Then again, overstatement is pretty much the Herald’s business these days.