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Revere mayor signs casino deal with Suffolk Downs

Posted by Your Town  August 28, 2013 07:25 PM

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Following a flurry of last-minute negotiations, Revere Mayor Dan Rizzo on Wednesday signed a casino deal with Suffolk Downs, clearing the last hurdle before the track’s casino plans can move forward to public referendums in Revere and in East Boston.

The city of Revere will post the agreement on the internet Thursday, but John V. Festa, the city’s director of economic development, explained in an interview beforehand that Revere would receive a percentage of the facility’s gambling revenue, if Suffolk Downs wins the sole Greater Boston resort casino license.

The potential payments change year-to-year under a complicated formula, he said, but the city estimates it would receive about $15 million per year. If the resort does not hit the expected revenue targets, the city will receive guaranteed minimum payments that range from about $4.25 million to $9 million per year, he said.

The agreement also includes up to $16 million in one-time community investments, according to Suffolk Downs.

Suffolk Downs and partner Caesars Entertainment have proposed a $1 billion resort casino at the track, which straddles the Boston-Revere city line.

After many months of negotiations, Suffolk Downs signed an agreement with Boston Mayor Thomas Menino on Tuesday.

The track is competing for the resort license with Wynn Resorts, which is planning to build in Everett, and a Foxwoods project in Milford. The state gambling commission is expected to choose the winning proposal in early 2014.

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