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What Foxborough selectmen said about the casino - then and now

Foxborough’s selectmen at their contentious discussion Tuesday about the casino proposal. After voting in September not to consider a zoning change that would allow one, the board has scheduled a meeting to hear details of the proposal.
Foxborough’s selectmen at their contentious discussion Tuesday about the casino proposal. After voting in September not to consider a zoning change that would allow one, the board has scheduled a meeting to hear details of the proposal. Kayana Szymczak for the Boston Globe/Globe Freelance

On Sept. 6, when they unanimously voted to reject a proposal to rezone Route 1 to allow casino gambling:

James DeVellis: “My feeling is I’m opposed to this.’’

Lynda Walsh: “This town is not equipped, and shouldn’t be made equipped, for a casino. . . . I don’t believe introducing a casino to this town is going to be beneficial compared to the detriment it could do.’’

Lorraine Brue: “I think all this work has been done. This town has spoken. I don’t think the town should be put through this emotional review after knowing what it was like last time.’’

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Mark Sullivan: “I think it is pretty simple. I don’t see a reason to bog down the selectmen, the Planning Board, and everybody with this discussion any longer. You look at the flavor of the community and they don’t want this. Let’s just kill it tonight.’’

Chairman Larry Harrington, when pushed by Brue, said: “You’ll hear my vote when I vote.’’ He added, “There is no sense repeating what others said. It’s very clear what the audience said tonight.’’

On Sept. 13, Harrington said publicly that he made a mistake in not allowing the community to vote and later said he’s keeping an open mind. Walsh and Sullivan followed suit.

Last Tuesday, before voting 3-to-2 to schedule a Jan. 10 meeting to hear what casino owner Steve Wynn has to say:

DeVellis (voted against): “I would like to thank the Krafts, but ask the board not to move forward with any more proposals to support gambling in Foxborough. I’m asking selectmen to stop the meetings; the board has voted often not to allow gambling in town.’’

Walsh (voted in favor): “I’ve lost a lot of votes tonight, but I’m here for the whole Town of Foxborough.’’

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Brue (against): “This has caused a deep division. The board has to say, ‘Do we want a casino or do we not?’ It’s a yes or no answer. We can end it tonight.’’

Sullivan (in favor): “I don’t like the concept. But my position as a town selectman and a leader of society is that everybody needs to be heard.’’

Harrington (in favor): “I haven’t made up my mind. There are lots of questions about traffic, jobs, and actual revenue to the town. But Mr. Kraft and Mr. Wynn deserve an opportunity to present a plan that people can evaluate and discuss . . . In the end, if the vast majority of people are opposed to a casino, it won’t move forward.’’