HCAV Maintains Charlestown Residents Should Vote on Wynn Casino Project

Mayor Thomas Menino (left) presents a proclamation to David Storto, President of Spaulding Rehab in Charlestown.

Mayor Thomas Menino (left) presents a proclamation to David Storto, President of Spaulding Rehab in Charlestown.

After Boston City Councilor Sal LaMattina and State Representative Eugene O’Flaherty sent letters to the state’s secretary on environmental affairs that spotlighted the potential impacts a Wynn Casino in Everett would have on Charlestown, the Boston’s Host Community Advisory Committee (HCAC)  is speaking up as well.

At a meeting hosted recently by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission at the Charlestown Knights of Columbus regarding the recently filed Environmental Notification Form (ENF) for the Everett casino, HCAC’s Elizabeth Dello Russo said it was the city’s opinion that Charlestown should be designated a Host Community and be able to vote on the proposal.

Dello Russo argued that according to the ENF a portion of Wynn’s plans includes development of property within Boston’s city limits. She added that the casino proposal would significantly impact Charlestown.

“When we saw this filing we said what we are reviewing shows us that, first of all, Charlestown is very impacted, and second of all, potentially a host community,” said Dello Russo at the meeting.

According to Mass gaming legislation a Host Community is the municipality where the casino or slots-facility will be located or is proposed to be located.  The host community will negotiate with the applicant to develop and approve a Host Community Agreement.

The agreement must identify and appropriately address all impacts the gaming facility will have on the host community. The host community is then required to host a referendum to approve the Host Community Agreement.

Two weeks ago LaMattina wrote a letter to Environmental Affairs Secretary Richard Sullivan and argued Wynn’s  ENF shows that at least 50% of all vehicles will utilize the Charlestown road system.

“Over 50% of the projected traffic to and from the casino will go through Boston, specifically Sullivan Square so I want to know how will the project mitigate the impacts of this traffic on the residents of Charlestown,” LaMattina wrote.

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