Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Springfield Republican Opposes Casinos in Massachusetts

Springfield Republican Opposes Casino in Massachusetts may seem contradictory to recent support expressed by The Republican newspaper for the proposed Springfield- MGM casino.  However, below is an 2008 Republican editorial expressing their opposition to casino gambling in Massachusetts. 

What has changed?


The Springfield Republican
Thursday, February 21, 2008

Odds of so-called "resort" casinos delivering busloads of tourists to attractions outside the perimeter of the gambling complexes are slim to none.

While supporters of Gov. Deval L. Patrick's proposal to establish three casinos - including one in Western Massachusetts - say casinos would provide an overall boost to tourism, that hasn't happened in Connecticut.

Just ask Ledyard, Conn., Mayor Frederic B. Allyn Jr., who governs in the shadow of Foxwoods casino. Beyond the two Dunkin' Donuts shops along Route 2, Allyn said, the 45,000 people who visit Foxwoods daily are "not stopping for anything."

During an interview for The Republican's four-part series "Rolling the Dice," which concluded yesterday, Allyn complained that the presence of a casino hasn't helped Ledyard a bit. He said his town of 15,000 residents still struggles to pave roads and repair infrastructure. Taxes are high - averaging $10,000 - and have driven many retirees away, he said.

If a "resort" casino were to be built in Palmer, as one would-be developer proposes, it's unlikely that casino-goers would stray from the confines of the casino. To suggest that tourists might expand their visit to the region to take in such attractions as Springfield's Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame or the museums at the Quadrangle is ridiculous.

There's no more unlikely conversation than the following: "Hey, let's hit the casino, then drive to the Museum of Fine Arts in Springfield, and then go to the Student Prince for dinner."

We believe in calling a spade a spade. Hopes that casinos will pump up local economies are false hopes.

There are many reasons why we're opposed to legalizing casino gambling in the Bay State. Casinos impose social costs that are higher than the financial benefits. The greatest gain in casino gambling goes to those who own the casinos, and the greatest loss with casino gambling comes for the people who wager there but who can least afford it - the elderly and the poor. Chasing casinos is like chasing fool's gold....