— Eye on Everett —

The End of Homecoming

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By Josh Resnek
There will be no Homecoming this year.

The powers that be, mainly the mayor and CFO Eric Demas, have deemed it too expensive and there for irrelevant.

They both believe that every dime of spending by the School Department for items like the Homecoming is an abomination. What is gained and what is lost?

The School Department will save as much as $50,000 when all is said and done. This can be put against the annual underfunding effort that has led to 100 teachers and aids being dismissed from the School Department. In this instance, the end of Homecoming can be perceived as a gain.

What is lost is not quite as easy to demarcate exactly.

What is lost is the city’s major annual parade, a giant event with thousands of Everett residents from all walks of life participating.

There have been 25 parades during the past 25 years – and each one was impressive in a world growing absent of such displays in communities like ours.

The parade is gone. The entire slate of events is gone, breakfasts with alumni, road races, concerts, fireworks have all vanished, just like that.

The football game survives as the football program survives, for now.

One never knows to what extent the mayor and the CFO will require cuts to be made by the School Department to maintain the city’s blessed and holy bond rating.

Football might oneway disappear like the parade – and what a savings that would be!

The mayor and CFO Demas could share high fives at the savings.

They could share the high fives with the naysayers, the grumpy, unhappy Facebook and Internet types who complain about road closures, expenses of city money and the meaninglessness of it all.

Underlying the end of Homecoming is this – the growing belief that the city is spending nearly all of its precious cash as it grows almost entirely dependent on the monster down the street, the casino/hotel.

Many Everett residents might have to wonder, and we wonder here at the Leader Herald…”Why must the Homecoming and everything important to creating the notion of community, that we are a community, have to go by the wayside when we are receiving so many millions upon millions from the casino?”

This is a great question.

It is the only question to be asked when talking about the demise of Homecoming or anything else the administration oneway deems too expensive to go on with.

Homecoming is gone. Village Fest is rising. It’s really nice isn’t it?

Taxes on the Rise, Again

When the mayor spends nearly all the city’s money on parks, city vehicles, added city employees, and a plethora of other items and things, somewhere, somehow, that money has to be made up.

When it comes time to balance the city books the mayor is forced to sit with CEO Eric Demas.

The following is a pretend conversation between the mayor and Demas.

“We’re short about 11% of the total budget amount for the upcoming year,” Demas might well have said to the mayor recently.

“So what do we do?” The mayor asked.

Then they looked at one another. Then they laughed aloud. “We need to raise taxes 11% to make up the shortfall,” the mayor answered his CFO.

We understand this is exactly what is going to happen. Your taxes are rising by about 11%, and soon.

What to do.

Nothing.

This Casino is Big…Very Big

The casino/hotel going up is like the birth of a giant. It is a bit like Godzilla mating with King Kong and giving birth to the casino/hotel.

The casino/hotel dwarfs anything and everything about this city.

It is a bigger operation than Distrigas and Exelon. It will employ thousands. It will generate hundreds of millions in its first year.

It will entirely and forever change the public face of this city.

The city will take a back door to the casino/hotel.

It is already becoming all that really matters to the mayor and to the city treasury.

It has already nearly emptied a large part of the city from the McDonald’s down to the water, paying millions and millions for properties that were worth a fraction of that.

It looks like Mike’s Roast Beef is hanging on, which would be a fitting epitaph to the whole affair which finds the casino/ hotel devouring the entire neighborhood and turning it into something of its own making.

At least I’ll be able to order up my favorite $8.00 lunch There is nothing wrong with this.
We just need to get our heads into the fact that we are not Everett anymore.

We are the casino/hotel location. We are Encore and everything that comes with it. We won’t be known as the city of Everett any longer. We will become known as the location of the casino/hotel. We become a gambling Mecca.

Most people will come to the casino/hotel believing it is part of Boston.

This will be our home industry the way oil used to be the home industry in places like Texas..

Gambling is everything.

Everything else doesn’t really matter.

Wynn Resorts is putting $2.5 billion into this effort.

It is a giant that will devour like a giant and is destined to live continuing to devour from the moment the ribbon is cut and the place opens its doors in June 2019.

Early Returns From Springfield

The first figures are in and have been announced by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission for the MGM casino in Springfield.

For the period August 23-31 gaming revenues from the casino totaled almost $10 million which netted the state a very cool $2.3 million in taxes!

MGM has released some preliminary results of its first month in operation in downtown Spring eld as well.

About 50,000 visitors have crowded the MGM casino on Friday Saturday and Sunday for the first four weeks.

That’s about 200,000 visitors!

MGM also announced that during the weekdays about 25,000 go to the casino complex everyday!

This is another impressive statistic.

The money being spent at the facility for all types of services and goods is astounding.

Here in Everett, we must keep in mind that the MGM Springfield effort is about 1/4 the investment and size of the Wynn Resorts.

So if you just look at the numbers of visitors and multiply by 3 to 4, you will have an idea of what happens when the Encore opens here.

Encore is not MGM Springfield. The effects of say 100,000 – 150,000 heading to the Everett casino every weekend and another 30,000 – 40,000 a day will impact life here in ways we cannot yet imagine or even dream of.

Traffic will be momentous, much less exert any control over.

The casino zone geography will be impenetrable for those of us just wanting to head into Boston.

When Encore opens in June 2019, our world will change overnight.

It is a guarantee – and so too are the added revenues bound to be coming into the city treasury.

This is what we signed up for. This is what is going to happen.

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