Casino Notebook: Wynn Moves Forward With Environmental Certificate Application

Making its first real statement since being charged with continuing the environmental permitting process, Wynn Resorts said on Monday that it has started work on its Second Supplemental Final Environmental Notification Form (SSFEIR) and has officially put a piece of Everett MBTA land in escrow.

The first step in continuing the grueling process for Wynn apparently was getting a grip on the property – which will provide unfettered access to the casino through Everett only and which the MBTA sold illegally due to it not going through environmental review.

Wynn has entered into an agreement with the MBTA to put the 2-acre land sale – which passed papers earlier this year – into escrow so that the state regulators can review the sale. Wynn also said it would provide a full analysis of the sale and the impacts of the sale on the MBTA in its upcoming SSFEIR filing.

“Secretary Mathew Beaton articulated the necessary path for us to resolve a handful of remaining issues.  We are committed to following that path and our actions today are a demonstration of that commitment,” said Robert DeSalvio, President of Wynn Everett. “We see no obstacles in meeting the requirements the Secretary has presented.”

  • The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) and the state Attorney General’s Office announced late last week that they have entered into an agreement regarding lawsuits against the MGC – specifically those filed by Boston, Revere and Somerville. Normally, the AG’s Office would defend any state agency like the MGC, but to avoid any conflicts of interest, the MGC has agreed to retain its own legal team to defend itself in the lawsuits.

The conflict comes due to the fact that the AG’s Office continues to prosecute the cases regarding the land sale in Everett from several individuals to Wynn Everett.

“The Attorney General’s Office and the Commission agree that the AG’s existing criminal prosecution of several individuals associated with the sale of land in Everett for a casino is of paramount importance,” read a statement. “It also is agreed that if the AG’s Office both prosecutes the criminal case and defends the Commission in the local cities’ litigation, it may complicate the full and vigorous presentation of legal issues by both the AG’s Office and the Commission in these respective matters.”

The MGC will hire private legal representation not paid for by the taxpayers to defend itself in the three suits.

  • Wynn Everett will be giving its second update to the MGC this month in what will become quarterly reports to the Board.

While no date has been set just yet, the update will happen in the next two weeks.

As part of the licensing agreement, Wynn and other casinos are called to give full reports on the projects and their statuses every quarter.

  • MGC Commissioner Bruce Stebbins will now be joined in state government by his wife, Katie.

Katie Stebbins was named by Housing and Economic Development Secretary Jay Ash on Tuesday as the new assistant secretary of innovation, technology and entrepreneurship.

Katie Stebbins comes to the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development with 20 years of experience in city and regional, and workforce and economic development. She served the City of Springfield for 10 years, specializing in environment planning and Brownfield redevelopment, worked for the Cecil Group in Boston, and served as the Western Massachusetts Director for Mass. Mentoring Partnership. Most recently, Katie ran her own consulting practice and was the primary consultant for the Holyoke Innovation District on behalf of the Massachusetts Tech Collaborative. She is a resident of Western Massachusetts.

  • There will be a Trade Union Expo held at Everett High School on Saturday, May 9. All the trades will be there to speak with Chelsea residents about construction apprenticeships and opportunities that will be available during the construction period.

Mohegan Sun officials announced Tuesday morning that, after a few disappointing ventures in America, they have inked an agreement with the Incheon International Airport Corp. in South Korea to develop a gateway entertainment resort on 800 acres of land.

The development is to include hotels, sports arenas, retail/shopping, a casino, an indoor-outdoor amusement park and a private jet terminal.

The company will develop, build and operate the facility, according to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

It would be the only resort-casino in the world attached to a fixed base private aviation operation. It would also be developed on the ground of the international airport, another rarity.

The Incheon International Airport is the 8th largest in the world and is estimated to serve 45 million travellers per year.

The development is expected to include, but not be limited to the following features:

  • Two-tower luxury hotel complex with 1,000 guest rooms, which will be split between 300 6-star rooms and 700 5-star rooms;
  • The first and only private jet terminal (FBO) in the world connected to an integrated casino resort;
  • More than 18,500 sq. meters of retail, food, art and music entertainment experiences, including a Korean village celebrating Korean food, and music, state of the art motion picture and film studio, and a Native American cultural and arts experience;
  • Over 60 of the most sought after luxury retail brands in the world and over 20 food and beverage concepts;
  • A Korean cosmetics and beauty hub promoting Korea’s dominance in Asia in this area;
  • Entertainment arena with capacity for up to 20,000 attendants for Class-A acts and arena sport events that have become synonymous with Mohegan Sun properties;
  • An Indoor-Outdoor amusement park with 18,500 sq. meters of the latest high-tech amusement rides and more than 12 outdoor attractions; and
  • A 18,500 square meter casino with 250 tables and 1,500 slot machines.

Mohegan Sun is joined in the venture by Miura Holdings Asia, and a final agreement must be made by June 30.

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