Window Into The State House

Wynn wins: Company to keep Everett casino license, though it will cost it $35M   From Kaitlyn Locke at WGBH: “The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has fined Wynn Resorts $35 million but will allow them to keep their state gaming license, the commission decided Tuesday after a year-long investigation into allegations of sexual assault and misconduct within the company.” The company’s CEO Matt Maddox was also fined $500,000 as part of the commission’s ruling. The Herald’s Jonathan Ng and CommonWeath’s Andy Metzger have more on the not-so-surprising decision by the apparently divided commission. Here’s one group of people happy with the commission’s finding: the folks in Everett, where more than 5,000 people will be employed once Encore Boston opens next month, as the Globe reports. But here are two institutions that can’t be happy: Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods Resort, as the Herald reports. From the Herald’s Joe Battenfeld: “Wynn Resorts got away with a massive cover-up and paid a hefty price but well worth it to keep their lucrative license for the Encore Boston Harbor casino in Everett.”  
  Is Cassellius the lead candidate for superintendent?   We’ll know the answer to the question today. From James Vaznis at the Globe: “As the School Committee prepares to vote on a new superintendent Wednesday night, many educators, parents, and community activists are coalescing around one candidate: Brenda Cassellius, a former Minnesota commissioner of education whom they describe as a consensus builder with a strong commitment to remedying educational inequities.” We do know this: A lot of activists and community leaders aren’t happy with the superintendent search process in general, as this multi-bylined opinion piece at CommonWealth magazine makes clear. Meanwhile, Joyce Ferriabough Bolling at the Herald has a suggestion: “Elected Boston school board would provide accountability.”  
  McGinn says he was the scapegoat in environmental-police scandal, vows to file whistleblower claim   From the Globe’s Matt Rocheleau: “The former head of the Massachusetts Environmental Police, who was fired last fall for allegedly fixing two traffic tickets, claims he was ousted in retaliation for reporting misconduct in the agency and was made a scapegoat during the gubernatorial campaign. Former colonel James McGinn asserts he repeatedly flagged unethical and illegal conduct under his watch, but his complaints went unheeded by his superior, outgoing state Environmental Secretary Matthew Beaton, according to letters released Tuesday by McGinn’s attorney.” WCVB and MassLive report he’s now planning to file a whistleblower claim against the state  
  Is Hasbro Worcester bound?   We knew that the Baker administration was trying to lure Rhode Island-based Hasbro to Massachusetts. But it appears Worcester, in particular, is making a push to lure Hasbro’s world headquarters to the city, offering up a newly revealed office building that will feature future views of the future Polar Park, as well as manufacturing space, Grant Welker reports at the Worcester Business Journal, citing emails obtained through a records request. If you recall, Worcester also recently lured the PawSox to the city, so this is yet a second raid attempt on poor Little Rhody.  
  Hampshire College cuts another 82 positions as it fights for survival   Jim Kinney at MassLive reports that 82 jobs are being eliminated at Hampshire College, as the small western Massachusetts school continues to grapple with a budget crisis that threatens the college’s survival. Hampshire College had already announced nine layoffs among its administrative staff. Fyi: UMass obviously isn’t facing anything like Hampshire College’s financial meltdown, but students, educators and advocates yesterday were almost pleading with lawmakers to allocate more state funds to the UMass system to keep tuitions affordable, reports SHNS’s Katie Lannan (pay wall).  
  ‘Some warning signs for Elizabeth Warren’   File under ‘You don’t say …’ The Globe’s James Pindell reports that the latest Suffolk University/Boston Globe poll of likely New Hampshire primary voters may have additional “warning signs for Senator Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 campaign,” beside the fact that she’s running fourth in the Granite State. Among voter concerns about Warren: She’s not the one who can beat Donald Trump. Meanwhile, the Globe’s Adrian Walker is not so sure the current Dem frontrunner, Joe Biden, is the guy to beat Trump. He hopes he’s wrong about Joe.  
  Why Seth Moulton’s candidacy matters — empirical evidence aside   David Bernstein writes at WGBH that U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton may not be attracting headlines and big crowds as he travels across the country as a Democratic candidate for president, but Moulton is going after college students and veterans – and those voters matter in this campaign, Bernstein says. Meanwhile, Peter Lucas at the Lowell Sun gives former-Marine Moulton a big “Oorah!” for at least emphasizing foreign policy and veterans in his bid for president. Fyi: Pete Buttigieg, also a veteran running for president, is pushing for generational change as well. Arjun Singh at WGBH has the details.  
  Report: Massachusetts is top state for high schools   Spencer Buell at Boston Magazine has the details on U.S. News and World Report’s latest survey showing that Massachusetts, on average, has the best high schools in the nation, even though none of our high schools landed on the top 30 list. But there was one tiny New England school that not only cracked the top 30 list, it nearly led the list, i.e. the Maine School of Science and Mathematics, as the Globe’s Matt Rocheleau reports.  
  ‘The point of the event appeared to be simply that people were willing pay’   The Globe’s James Pindell strains to find a compelling news peg about last night’s appearance of Bill and Hillary Clinton at the Boston Opera House, as part of the couple’s multi-city Live Nation tour, and Pindell concludes: “The point of the event appeared to be simply that people were willing to pay to see the pair and the pair was available.” Fyi: The headline on the piece (“Clintons talk marriage, Mueller, and a little politics at Opera House”) practically screams: NO NEWS HERE.  
  Border war: Saugus files suit over Lynn-line pot shop   The town of Saugus has made good on its threat to sue the neighboring city of Lynn for approving a recreational pot shop on the border between the two communities, Bridget Turcotte and Gayla Cawley report at the Lynn Item. Saugus — which has a town-wide ban in place on recreational cannabis businesses — says the building where Lynn officials approved a dispensary is partly in Saugus and that the applicant’s traffic mitigation proposals were not properly vetted.   
  David McCullough: ‘What a New England story this is’   Interviewed by Thomas Stackpole at Boston Magazine, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough has just sold us, literally, on buying his new book ‘The Pioneers,’ about how New Englanders such as Rufus Putnam, Manasseh Cutler and Samuel Hildreth played leading roles in settling the Ohio territory in the 1700s – and then narrowly defeated efforts to bring slavery into the territory. Fyi: The would-be pioneers hatched their initial Ohio plans at the old Bunch of Grapes Tavern in Boston, as McCullough proudly notes.  
  Rosenberg: Time to fix foster care – and stick with it   Former Senate President Stan Rosenberg, who grew up as a foster kid, reacts to the Globe’s recent series on the broken foster-care system in Massachusetts, saying the state can no longer follow “shifting political winds” and needs to come up with best-practice policies – and then stick with them. He has some good ideas on what needs to be done, broadly speaking. Fyi: The Globe, in an editorial, doesn’t seemed impressed with the Baker administration’s reform efforts of late.  
  At an intersection near you: The top 100 crash sites in Massachusetts   MassLive has all the DOT data and information about the most crash-prone sites in Massachusetts – and Brockton, Springfield and Worcester seem to have more than their fair share of dangerous intersections.