Gearing Up for Special Election on October 18:City Officials Go to Court to Stop Slots Parlor Vote

By Sue Ellen Woodcock

A hearing in Suffolk Superior Court is scheduled to be held today, September 21 to determine whether or not the city can stop a special election scheduled for October 18 regarding a proposed slots parlor and hotel at the trailer park on Revere Beach Parkway.

 City officials oppose the special election because of the burden it places on the city. The special election costs about $70,000 and a national and state election will be held on November 8. One of the Questions on this November ballot is Question 1 seeking to expand slot licenses.  If Massachusetts voters do not approve this Question, then a slot parlor in Revere or anywhere else in Massachusetts is moot. In addition to the cost, there also concern about the burden placed on city staff.

Election Commissioner Diane Colella said her office is moving ahead as if an election were coming. She said they need the time for the amount work that needs to be done.

The Honorable Judge Shannon Frison will conduct today’s hearing at 10 a.m. in Suffolk Superior Court. Frison was appointed by Gov. Deval Patrick in 2013. She is a former officer and lawyer in the United States Marine Corp. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Harvard and a J.D. from Georgetown. Eugene McCain proposes the 400-hotel and slot parlor to be placed on the site of the current Lee’s Trailer Park on Revere Beach Parkway. But to place the slots parlor there he must obtain a permit from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. He has collected signatures for a special election in Revere on October 18.

If Question 1 is approved it would be up to the Gaming Commission to grant another permit. The other condition for a slots parlor is that the gaming establishment must be within 1,500 feet of a horse racing facility.

“We’re still advocating to have the rights of the citizens to vote in a special election in Revere,” said Jason Osborne, who is working with McCain.

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