The Boston Globe - 08.08.2019

(Joyce) #1

THURSDAY, AUGUST 8, 2019 The Boston Globe Nation/Region A

the state had hit the jackpot.
“We wanted economic de-
velopment, and we got it. We
wanted a wow factor, and we
got it,” Crosby, 74, said over a
salmon burger at the casino’s
Garden Café.
Since Massachusetts legal-
ized gambling in 2011, perhaps
no one in the state has lived
and breathed casinos with
more gusto than Crosby,
whether it’s been crafting regu-
lations or dealing with larger-
than-life Las Vegas personali-
ties looking to win a lucrative
And among the casinos that
have opened in Massachusetts,
no location was as anticipated
— or as controversial — as En-
core, owned by Wynn Resorts.
Crosby often found himself
in the middle of the many con-
troversies. He had to recuse
himself from the 2014 vote on
whether Wynn Resorts should
get the coveted Greater Boston
license after he attended a pri-
vate party at Suffolk Downs cel-
ebrating opening day at the
horsetrack. At the time, Suffolk
Downs had teamed up with
Mohegan Sun to compete
against Wynn Resorts for the

Continued from Page A

casino license. Prior to that,
Crosby had to recuse himself
from a review of Everett casino
property after disclosing that
he was a friend and former
business partner of one of the
Crosby was in the crosshairs
again last summer over the
commission’s investigation into
Wynn Resorts’ handling of mul-
tiple allegations of sexual mis-
conduct levied against co-
founder Steve Wynn. Wynn
stepped down as CEO in 2018,
but the commission wasn’t sure
the company should keep its

gaming license here. Represen-
tatives for Steve Wynn and Mo-
hegan Sun accused Crosby of
what Crosby described in his
own resignation letter as “pre-
judging the outcome” of the re-
view. Since losing to Wynn Re-
sorts, Mohegan Sun, a tribal ca-
sino in Connecticut, has sought
to overturn the decision and
sued the commission alleging
the licensing process was
Crosby, in his resignation
letter, maintained that the pro-
cess had been fair but that he
did not want to become a dis-
traction. Since then, the public
hasn’t heard from the normally
loquacious Crosby. Officially re-
tired, he has helped launch a
nonprofit called the Civic Ac-
tion Project to develop the next
generation of civic leaders.
There is a new gambling
czarina — Governor Charlie
Baker appointed Cathy Judd-
Stein to the post in January.
Wynn Resorts got to keep its li-
cense but under revamped and
tougher conditions that includ-
ed a $35 million fine. Crosby
won’t talk about whether he
would have done anything dif-
ferently with the decision had
he stayed on the commission.
But enough inside baseball.

Back to his Encore visit.
The former gaming chair-
man isn’t much of a gambler
and he didn’t try his luck last
week — not even at the slots.
Instead, he made a beeline to
GameSense, a booth on the
gaming floor that offers tips on
how to gamble responsibly.
Then-governor Deval Pat-
rick picked Crosby in large part
because he’s a policy junkie.
Crosby was dean of the McCor-
mack Graduate School of Policy
and Global Studies at the Uni-
versity of Massachusetts Bos-
ton, after having served as bud-
get chief under Governor Paul
Cellucci and chief of staff under
Acting Governor Jane Swift.
Gaming, for all its flash, is a
wonky business that juggles
regulation and politics with the
dynamics of an ever-changing
Crosby couldn’t help but no-
tice Encore’s “extraordinary
luxury,” but what made the
deepest impression on him was
the transformation of the site, a
long-abandoned Monsanto
chemical plant that was a noto-
rious toxic waste dump. Stand-
ing outside the casino overlook-
ing a cleaned up riverfront,
Crosby marveled at how Wynn
went all-in — spending $2.6 bil-

lion on a gleaming monument
to gambling that rivals the pal-
aces of Las Vegas.
“Where would you ever get
the vision and nerve to imagine
it?” Crosby said as he walked
along a paved path framed by
meticulous flower beds of pink
petunias, gold and orange
marigolds, and orange sunpa-
“This is mindboggling,” he
said. “The restoration is fantas-
the carousel, Popeye. They’re
Vegas, but the waterfront is
That — after GameSense, of
course — is what Crosby called
his favorite part of Encore.
“Look at this place. I am go-
ing to take a picture of this,” he
said as he walked toward the
river’s edge to get a better
glimpse of the flower beds,
trees, and lawn.
Is there something he
doesn’t like? Well, yes, but it’s
minor. He said Encore needs
better signage by the Long
Wharf dock — it was hard for
him to find where to catch the
And then there’s the ques-
tion of whether Wynn Resorts
can make a return on its invest-
ment. When the company won

the license in 2014, it planned
to spend only $1.6 billion, not a
billion dollars beyond that.
“It’s got to cause everyone to
pause,” Crosby said. “Now we
all just hold our breath and
hope it works.”
As for his role in shaping the
state’s casino industry, here’s a
bit of self reflection: “Even with
many years of experience in
high level politics and public
life, I underestimated the PR,
political and legal maelstrom
that establishing casinos would
engender. On top of it, I made
my share of mistakes. So how
has it worked out? I would say
so far, so good. But the truth is
we will not know the long-term
cost/benefit trade-offs of desti-
nation resort casinos for years
or even decades.”
Unless you’re a blue heron
living the good life on this new-
ly cleaned-up section of the
Mystic. Crosby could be onto
something: The biggest winner
in Everett might be its river-

Mark Arsenault of the Globe
staff contributed to this article.
Shirley Leung is a Globe
columnist. She can be reached
Follow her on Twitter @leung.

Steve Crosby said of the
casino, “We wanted a wow
factor, and we got it.”


By Richard Fausset
A long-running sexual abuse
scandal that has prompted the
Boy Scouts of America to con-
sider bankruptcy flared anew
this week, when a lawsuit filed
in Philadelphia asserted that
there were hundreds more pos-
sible sexual predators associat-
ed with the organization, be-
yond those already listed in its
A man now in his 50s who

brought the lawsuit alleges that
an assistant scoutmaster sexu-
ally abused him in the mid-
1970s, when he was a young
scout in Luzerne County, Pa.,
and that the organization’s
“negligent, willful, wanton,
reckless and tortious acts and
omissions” allowed the abuse to
happen. The lawsuit also accus-
es the Boy Scouts of engaging in
a coverup to hide “the extent of
the pedophilia epidemic within
their organization.”
The plaintiff’s lawyer, Stew-
art J. Eisenberg of Philadelphia,
belongs to an alliance of law-
yers called Abused in Scouting
that formed this year after re-
ports surfaced that the Texas-

based Boy Scouts of America
was considering filing for Chap-
ter 11 bankruptcy protection.
That step would make it more
difficult to pursue legal claims
against the organization and re-
The lawsuit says that former
scouts across the country have
come forward to identify 350
possible sexual abusers who
were not included in the Boy
Scouts’ confidential files on vol-
unteers who were excluded
from the organization because
of accusations of child sexual
abuse. This year, an expert on
child sexual abuse who had re-
viewed those files testified in
another case that there were

nearly 8,000 people listed in
Some details about those
files, which the Boy Scouts have
kept since the 1920s, have been
public for years. In 2012, an ex-
tensive investigation by The Los
Angeles Times found hundreds
of cases in which accusations
were not reported to law en-
forcement or were kept hidden
from family members.
The lawsuit says the Boy
Scouts should have known that
its list of ineligible volunteers
was flawed and, in some cases,
ineffective. The organization
“was aware that it had ejected
thousands of pedophiles from
its ranks of leadership in local

scout troops and failed to in-
form the scouts and their par-
ents of that fact,” the lawsuit
In a statement released this
week, the Boy Scouts said
“there were instances in our or-
ganization’s history when cases
were not addressed or handled
in a manner consistent with our
commitment to protect scouts,
the values of our organization
and the procedures we have in
place today.”
The civil complaint, filed in
the Court of Common Pleas of
Philadelphia County on Mon-
day, identifies the plaintiff only
by the initials S.D. He asserts in
the complaint that the abuse

began when he was 12 or 13
and continued until he was 17.
Along with the national organi-
zation, the lawsuit names as de-
fendants the local Penn Moun-
tains Council of the Boy Scouts
and the assistant scoutmaster.
The Boy Scouts of America
said in its statement that when
it received information from
the plaintiff’s lawyers about the
350 newly identified possible
abusers, it began an investiga-
tion. It has sent about 120 re-
ports to law enforcement agen-
cies as a result, the organization
said, and was told that addi-
tional information about some
of the cases was needed to fol-
low up on the allegations.


Add accusations

that organization

covered up reports

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