Is this any way to promote a casino? MTA to Deval’s rescue. They just love new revenue, even if its unrealized!
Patrick bets on teachers in three-casino push
Governor launching new offensive to get bill passed
Jan 17, 2008
By Ken Maguire THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
BOSTON- Gov. Deval L. Patrick said yesterday he’s not locked into his plan on how to spend casino revenue, offering a position that education leaders say would help motivate teachers to fight for passage of the legislation.
The Democratic governor and labor union officials solidified their relationship yesterday, meeting in a Dorchester union hall to rally around the prospect of casinos that would create 20,000 permanent jobs and even more temporary construction jobs.
Patrick, whose administration is launching a new offensive to get the three-casino bill passed early this year, wants to divide what he estimates will be $400 million in annual revenue between property tax credits for homeowners and road and bridge repairs.
“I do want to make a plug here and now to allot some of those funds to public education because after all it is the system of public education that teaches the kids who become the workers that fuel the economy of this state,” Anne Wass, president of the Massachusetts Teachers Association, told the governor during the union meeting.
Wass, whose organization represents 107,000 educators, later said teachers would be more inclined to lobby for the bill if education were one of the direct recipients of revenue.
“I expect all of that is going to be on the table,” Patrick told reporters after the event. “There is broad support for the concept of three resort casinos and a lot of debate yet to come about how to dedicate those revenues but we ought to have that debate.”
The MTA executive board has voted to support the measure because education would still benefit indirectly, Wass noted.