Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Senate President Therese Murray, have released a joint statement promising a full public debate on gambling will take place in both branches of state government after Labor Day.
DeLeo, Murray and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick had met earlier this month to outline the terms of a gaming bill, which was blamed for crowding out other legislation when it was considered last year. DeLeo had gone on the record hoping that a bill would be ready for the Governor’s signature this month, but the legislative leaders as well as the Governor have apparently opted for a more deliberate approach. The delay will “allow for public analysis and a full debate,’’ according to the statement, which recognized gaming’s potential to create jobs and raise revenue.
Last July, the legislature passed a bill that would have legalized three casinos and two slot parlors, to be bid on by the state's four racetracks, a provision that Patrick rejected in favor of an open bidding process. He asked lawmakers to vote on a bill with three casino licenses and no racetrack slots, but the measure was never considered.
Mass. legislators to tackle gaming in September
July 15, 2011