Katherine Clark, the 50-year-old Democratic nominee for the Fifth Congressional District, is heavily favored in the Dec. 10 special election to succeed Edward J. Markey in the US House of Representatives.
Yet Clark, a state senator from Melrose, still faces one last test.
Her Republican opponent, Frank J. Addivinola Jr., a businessman and lawyer with six graduate degrees and conservative views on the Affordable Care Act, guns, gay marriage, and abortion, says he is going to win.
Katherine Marlea Clark
Born: 1963 New Haven, CT
Undergraduate education: St. Lawrence University
Profession: State senator
Self-described political views: Progressive Democrat
Personal life: Married with three school-age boys
Current residence: Melrose
Grocery store of choice: Market Basket
International adventure: Studied abroad in Nagoya, Japan, in 1983
Frank John Addivinola Jr.
Born: 1960 Malden, MA
Undergraduate education: Williams College
Profession: Doctoral student, teacher, lawyer, owner test prep business
Self-described political view: Smaller government, traditional Republican
Personal life: Married
Current residence: Boston
Grocery store of choice: Market Basket
International adventure: From 2002-2006, lived in Odessa, Ukraine, and ran a tourist-focused business there
BOSTON (AP) — A majority of the state’s gambling commission appeared Tuesday to be leaning toward allowing Mohegan Sun to pursue a casino on land owned by Suffolk Downs in Revere, without requiring a second vote by the city’s residents.
Three of the five members of the panel, including its chairman, Stephen Crosby, indicated in remarks during a meeting that even though the proposal had changed dramatically from the one Revere voters backed on Nov. 5, they believed an earlier agreement between Suffolk Downs and the city allowed for broad revisions and noted there had not as yet been any discernable outcry among residents over the new plan.
Two commissioners, James McHugh and Bruce Stebbins, expressed reservations about allowing the plan to proceed without a second referendum — which would not be possible before the state’s Dec. 31 deadline for final casino applications.
The panel put off a final decision — which does not have to be unanimous — until next week, when it will also formally decide whether to allow Mohegan Sun to replace Suffolk Downs as the applicant for the sole eastern Massachusetts casino license.
Suffolk Downs, a 78-year-old thoroughbred racetrack, turned to a Revere-only scenario after East Boston voters rejected a proposed casino that would have straddled the communities. Suffolk Downs later announced that Connecticut-based Mohegan Sun, which failed in an earlier bid for a casino in Palmer, would develop and operate the casino.
While calling the Revere proposal ‘‘very attractive,’’ McHugh expressed concern over the change in the scope of the project in Revere and the switch from Suffolk Downs to Mohegan Sun as the applicant.
‘‘I am troubled by those issues,’’ said McHugh, a former judge. ‘‘I'm troubled by the dramatic change in the content of the agreement, from the agreement that was before voters.’’
But Crosby noted that the agreement between Suffolk Downs and Revere not only allowed for, but actually encouraged, future expansion in Revere.
‘‘It was anticipated that there was the possibility of a substantial change,’’ said Crosby. ‘‘There was a reopener clause that begged for more development in Revere.’’
Commissioners Gayle Cameron and Enrique Zuniga also indicated support for allowing the Revere-only plan to move forward, with Cameron saying the panel had received only one objection from a Revere voter about the revised plan — and that from a resident who had voted no in the Nov. 5 referendum.
‘‘How do people in Revere feel? Do they feel it is a different project? I haven’t seen that response,’’ Cameron said.
While it would no longer operate the casino, Suffolk Downs — New England’s only thoroughbred facility — has promised to continue racing at the track which is located on the East Boston side of the Revere border. But it would have to move its stables to a new location to make room for the proposed casino.
If the commission does give Mohegan Sun the green light to apply, the proposal could be in competition for the eastern regional casino license with Wynn Resorts, which has proposed a casino for Everett. The commission hopes to award the license by mid-2014.
The Mystic Valley Regional Charter School has hired Shawn Thornton as its new athletic director. Thornton took over the reins of Mystic Valley’s athletic program on Dec. 1 from Marc Arria, who left to take the athletic director’s position at Winchester High School.
Thornton has an extensive background in the local high school athletics scene. He is a Bridgewater State College graduate. He received his master's degree from Northeastern University. He worked as athletic director and girls’ basketball coach at Saint Clement and Pope John.
Thornton has received many awards including: the Ted Damko Award in 2008; Girls Basketball Sportsmanship Award from the Mass.Interscholastic Athletic Association in 2011; District H Athletic Director of Year Award in 2013 and Girls Basketball Sportsmanship Award MIAA CAA - Certified Athletic Administrator in 2013.
Additionally, in 2013 he earned his 100th victory as a girls' basketball coach. His coaching record in the Catholic Central League over the past three seasons (two at Pope John in Everett and one at Saint Clement High School in Medford) is 33-3.
"It is a privilege and honor to be part of a rich and prestigious school that has a great vision and I look forward working with the administration, coaches, parents, and of course, each and every student-athlete," said Thornton, who was a three-sport star at Saint Clement and resides in Medford.
Suffolk Downs announced Wednesday afternoon that it will partner with Mohegan Sun on a resort casino proposed to be built on 42 acres of the racetrack’s 52-acre property in the city of Revere.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission also announced that Suffolk Downs and its casino plans are on the panel’s agenda for a meeting on Tuesday. The Globe reported the new partnership in Wednesday's paper.
Mohegan Sun, which operates casinos in Connecticut, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, had sought a casino license in western Massachusetts until voters in Palmer rejected their proposal earlier this month by less than 100 votes, an outcome that was confirmed Tuesday in a recount.
Suffolk Downs dropped its gaming partner Caesars following a state background check just prior to losing a critical vote in East Boston on Nov. 5, which prompted the track to draw up plans for a new casino just over the city line in Revere.
“Mohegan Sun and Suffolk Downs each began our pursuit of a place in the Massachusetts gaming industry in different ways and different locations. Circumstances brought us together in recent days, and we immediately recognized that something truly special can be created in Revere,” said Mitchell Etess, CEO of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority.
Mohegan Sun and its financial partner Brigade Capital Management, which brings a $15 billion investment, have already been found suitable along with Suffolk Downs by the gaming commission to compete for a license.
As part of the new agreement with Suffolk Downs to become a development partner and gaming operator, Mohegan Sun has agreed to honor all commitments previously made by the track in its host community agreement with Revere, and plans to work with Suffolk Downs to reach surrounding community agreements.
Even though the terms of the host community agreement are not being altered, the commission has not yet ruled on whether the referendum vote in Revere taken when the project still included development in East Boston can stand for a Revere-only project. If Suffolk Downs and Revere can get a casino proposal on track, they would compete with neighboring Everett for the casino license in eastern Massachusetts.
In a statement, Revere Mayor Dan Rizzo said he was “very encouraged” by the new partnership.
- M. Murphy/SHNS
State transportation officials are accepting applications to fill seven seats on a construction working group that will advise the MBTA on the Green Line extension project.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation is seeking individuals who live in Somerville, Cambridge or Medford who are familiar with the neighborhoods around the proposed stations and use the MBTA system. The construction working group has two open seats for the proposed Ball Square station area, two open seats for the Gilman Square area, and one open seat each for the proposed station areas at College Avenue and Union Square, and the relocation of the Lechmere station.
The construction group, formerly known as the design working group, will advise the MBTA on the final design and construction issues associated with the project and members will help the MBTA plan neighborhood and community meetings, according to the state. Members of the working group will also represent their communities and share information and feedback with neighbors and the working group.
Preference will be given to applicants who live within a one-mile radius of the proposed stations. Applications are due Dec. 13 and should be sent along with contact information to Regan Checchio at firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications can be found online at greenlineextension.eot.state.ma.us/documents/wrkGroup/cwgApplication.pdf.
More information on the goals and responsibilities of the working group can be found here.