By Mayor Carlo DeMaria
The Massachusetts Gaming Act was enacted in 2011 specifically to create new jobs, generate new tax revenue and propel local economic growth. Less than a year before the resort opens its doors, the transformative and positive effect of the Commonwealth’s gaming legislation is already being felt.
In the City of Everett, where I am proud to serve as mayor, construction of the $2.4 billion Encore Boston Harbor resort is progressing at an amazing pace. Today, less than a year before the resort is in operation, more than $10 million in salaries have been paid to construction workers who reside in our city. Everett residents are also receiving priority access to the more than 4,500 openings at Encore Boston Harbor. These are careers, not just jobs, providing exceptional salaries, benefits and opportunity.
More than money, there is a forceful and transformative spirit that has permeated our city. Encore is revitalizing an industrial and underutilized neighborhood and opening a beautiful urban waterfront that has been fenced off from the public for 100-plus years. More than $30 million was spent by Encore to clean the former chemical plant site that was highly contaminated and blighting the community.
Since construction of Encore Boston Harbor started, my office regularly takes calls from developers worldwide looking to invest in our city. The number of new businesses who want to open here and existing companies who want to expand here is skyrocketing. There is an infectious excitement and optimism that can be felt whenever I talk to local business owners. This completely dispels the myth that when casinos arrive, local firms suffer.
A five-star gaming resort that’s the caliber of Encore Boston Harbor does not take away from local businesses. Rather, it is bringing in tourists who would never have visited our city while generating $660 million a year in taxes, payroll, goods and services—including $100 million with local vendors.
That’s nearly $2 million a day injected into our local economy. And that’s not counting one dollar of secondary spending in and around Everett by Encore’s eight million guests a year or 4,500 employees. This stimulus creates growth and prosperity, which, in turn, improves public safety and overall quality of life.
The City of Everett is thriving, and will continue to thrive, because Encore is a catalyst in our economic development and that of the entire Commonwealth.