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Mass. Slots Dead For 2010

Published: August 25, 2010 12:46 pm ET

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Philosopher Yogi Berra famously said “It’s not over until it’s over,” and Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo made fairly clear yesterday that it’s over for this year as far as slots at tracks are concerned.

When protracted debate carried the legislature to its closing hours before passing a bill calling for three casinos and two racinos, Gov. Deval Patrick took advantage of the timing and sent the legislators an amended bill killing the racinos.

With the legislature shut down for the session, the slim chance for racinos rested on special sessions. Senate President Therese Murray, who sided with the governor, announced that there would be no special session of that body, and yesterday House Speaker DeLeo told the Boston Herald, “I think the Senate’s president has been pretty clear that she’s about a couple votes short in terms of coming back, so right now I don’t think that is an option for us. So I’m moving ahead accordingly.”

He was asked if chances were 'pretty low' for any action on slots at tracks this year -- a special project and interest of his -- and he responded, “Well, yes.”

He also said that action on divvying up $450 million in federal Medicaid relief, which would require two-thirds approval in both House and Senate if they were in session, could be accomplished in informal session if need be.

Like the old Brooklyn Dodgers, there’s always next year.

(Harness Tracks of America)


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