Officials promote impact agreement for casino

Town officials are promoting the adoption of state regulations that could lead to Saugus receiving mitigation funds if Suffolk Downs is awarded a casino license. Under the 2011 casino law, license applicants must negotiate impact agreements with host and surrounding communities. Town Manager Scott Crabtree recently sent a letter to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission voicing the town’s support for the commission’s proposal to provide itself with the authority to designate, based on several criteria, “surrounding” communities. Suffolk Downs, located on the East Boston-Revere line, has applied to develop a resort casino in partnership with Caesars Entertainment. In his letter, Crabtree said that given the town’s proximity to Revere, if a license were granted for a casino at Suffolk Downs, Saugus would “certainly be impacted” under some of the commission’s proposed “surrounding community” criteria. Crabtree cited potential adverse effects on transportation infrastructure, traffic, and businesses, and a loss in town meals, hotel, and real estate tax revenues.