With a ballot question proposing to repeal the casino law in the state weeks away, casino proponents and opponents continue to fiercely debate the issue.
During a brief debate today this morning on WCVB, Steve Tolman, the president of Massachusetts AFL-CIO, said casinos would bring more jobs to Massachusetts and stem the tide of gambling dollars -- $1 billion annually, he claims --that are currently spent by local residents at out-of-state casinos.
Casino gambling was signed into law in 2011. The law, in its current form, allows for three resort casinos and one slots parlor in the state.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has already approved casino proposals in Springfield and Everett and a slots parlor in Plainville -- a project that broke ground in August. The state has yet to approve a casino license for southeastern Massachusetts, but is expected to do so in coming months.
John Ribeiro, chairman of the Repeal the Casino Deal, meanwhile, said casinos are failing all around the country. Crime, said Ribeiro,
would increase in and around host communities, while quality of life would decrease.
"Casinos have not saved a single community," he said.
The casino repeal question will feature on the Nov. 4 ballot.