CASINO

Somerville may bring Wynn Boston Harbor permit battle to court

TAGs: Jasmine Solana, Joseph Curtatone, Massachusetts, Somerville, wynn boston harbor, Wynn Resorts

The battle over Wynn Boston Harbor’s permit is not yet over for the city of Somerville.

Somerville may bring Wynn Boston Harbor permit battle to courtCity officials announced on Tuesday they will no longer ask Massachusetts environmental officials to reconsider their decision to grant the decisive waterfront development permit to the $2.1 billion Wynn Resorts casino in Everett.

However, the city is considering taking the matter to the Supreme Court.

“The City of Somerville does not intend to seek reconsideration of the commissioner’s final decision in this matter,” the city said in a statement, according to Patch.com. “Somerville is, however, continuing to evaluate the decision and whether to pursue judicial review.”

If you recall, Somerville Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone filed an administrative appeal early this year questioning the environmental permit that Wynn Resorts received in January on grounds that the casino project will seriously affect “the health of city residents as an estimated 18,000 people per day are expected to drive to the casino.”

The state’s Department of Environmental Protection recommended giving the casino operator its needed environmental license. The department backed Wynn’s plans for the casino resort, albeit with some revisions that include adding ferry services, a fishing pier, and a kayak and canoe launch near the complex.

In a 50-page decision, DEP hearing officer Jane Rothchild determined that Somerville had “failed to prove” that the state was wrong in giving Wynn the original license to build a casino that will bring back “to useful life” the 33 acres of land that has been contaminated for decades with lead, arsenic and other pollutants.

DEP Commissioner Martin Suuberg finally approved the permit last July 22, effectively clearing Wynn Boston’s final regulatory hurdle. The casino operator is expected to receive it license “within the next two days,” according to DEP spokesman Ed Coletta.

Somerville has until Aug. 22 to file an appeal in Superior Court.

“Our goal has never been to stop the casino,” Curtatone said, according to Boston Globe. “It’s always been to mitigate the negative effects on our environment, and protect the health and safety of our residents . . . If we can further those goals by [seeking] a judicial review, we will.”

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