Thursday, April 30, 2009

Another One Bites the Dust

The Lynn casino boat is in bankruptcy.
In October, the 186-foot vessel - with its rows of slot machines and felt tabletops featuring blackjack, three card poker, roulette, craps, and other games of chance - left the pier and never returned, despite a signed lease for its space at the dock, a $200,000 lawsuit for damages to the dock, and a lien on the ship. This week, after the pier's owner filed an additional lawsuit against Horizon's Edge Excursions for allegedly failing to pay $15,000 in rent, the ship's company filed for bankruptcy.
Now, with a monopoly on all slot machines available from Massachusetts, one would think they'd be the epitome of profitable. Well, I guess it's a good thing we're not reliant on them for revenue.

But at least casinos are good neighbors, right?

Cowdell said the city has a $65,644.47 lien on the ship. He added that Horizon's Edge also owes the Lynn Water and Sewer Commission more than $2,300 for six months of service. He said the company previously had financial problems and blamed them on their operations in Florida. He said his office had set up a payment plan that allowed Horizon's Edge to repay the Economic Development and Industrial Corporation over time. Rent was $5,000 a month.

"The thing that really aggravates me is that we bent over backwards to them when they were late on payments," he said. "For them to just shut off the valve without any communication is no way to do business. I find it hard to believe that they have no money left."


Anonymous said...

Ah, the first bankruptcy in the history of the City of Lynn. Your head is up your "I hate gambling" ass.

Anonymous said...


It's nice to know you attract the "I support all forms of gambling regardless" crowd who miss the point in every article.

And it looks like Mike has little else to do.

If we are to accept that gambling is the savior of all things revenue, this seems to disprove it.This company seems pretty irresponsible. Besides, where's the boat?

Senate President Therese Murray carefully avoids any public questions and debate of the gambling issues, which seems to foretell how she plans to cram the vote through.

Anonymous said...

You are talking about a private business that failed. It happens all the time. I do not support all forms of gambling. I do not support cock fighting for instance. I do support free choice and the free market. Perhaps the geniuses at Lynn EDIC can figure out through lawyers how to work through the ch 7 process. Again it happens all the time.

Ryan said...

I'm not saying it is anything but a private business -- legal at that. I always pointed out, when people complained about how anti-casino people were "anti gambling" that, in fact, there were numerous forms of gambling already legal in this state.

The reason why this is particularly relevant, IMO, is that there are certain politicians in this state who seem to think slots will solve significant budget problems. However, we had a legalized monopoly in this state for slots -- and even there, it failed. It's not going to bring the kind of revenue Cahill and Terry Murray project -- no "kachings" as Ms. Murray boasted.

If revenue isn't a valid reason for slots, what possible policy point does it achieve? It doesn't make us safer, it doesn't add the revenue lobbyists boast -- it only makes us beholden to a whole new class of lobbyists, about the most corrupt kind there is.

Anonymous said...

I have been on the slot boats in Florida, been to Twin River, and go once a month to Foxwoods. There is a huge distinction between them so to compare the demise of the boat to other forms of "entertainment" is not sensible. And before you say Foxwoods is in trouble, so is Chrysler and AIG but Foxwoods isn't looking to take anything out of my pockets that I don't give voluntarily. Ryan have you ever been to see the evil Foxwoods, you won't get infected and maybe it would interest you to see the face of evil.

Anonymous said...

Ex-employees and current employees have interesting tales to tell of casino management for those who listen.
One man explained that Foxwoods has auto appraisal experts hovering to take your vehicle so you can continue to gamble after you've emptied your pockets.
I believe you got it right, Ryan, about gambling not being the panacea Cahill and Murray pretend.
Notice how revenue estimates that they use continue to decline.
First Cahill said a billion in licensing fees and $550 million per year. Now Murray is saying $400million per year. Does anyone notice how they fail to include even the barest costs? What will the regulatory agency cost?
Every state that has legalized expanded gambling has higher taxes than Massachusetts because they failed to include the impact costs -- New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, and others.
If you want to gamble, go to Rhode Island or Connecticut, I say! Leave the problems behind you.

Anonymous said...

I hope the anti-casino crowd will use the same vigour over the next few years to fight other businesses that prey on the poor. (I've heard already it's easier to prevent casinos coming in than to eliminate what's already here). But since you have so much ambition to clean up the world, why don't you start to fight for example the check cashing stores, or payday loan stores which are a real blight on the hapless poverty level workers. Then the Mass lottery.

Ryan said...

Anon 5:18, I've been to Las Vegas. I know what the insides of a casino looks like. Nothing's stopping you from going to the insides of them -- it's a short trip for you that you make monthly. So, please spare me the righteous indignation: no one's stopping you from gambling. There's plenty of options, even in this state.

We've just banned the one form of gambling that is the most addictive and predatory in nature -- an indisputable fact. It literally doubles the rate of addiction and it serves as a casino's primary mode of profits, well more than a majority of what they take in. The results of that is 1 in 4 families has an addict (the addiction rate is 5% when there's slots within 50 miles). Additionally, since up to 3/4 of a casino's profits is a redistribution of the money already flowing in the economy, it's a huge drain on the already-struggling restaurants, bars, clubs and other entertainment venues within that same 50 mile area. That's why you've seen Atlantic City lose about 3/4 of all its restaurants and bars (going from over 220 to under 60) & in the few short years Detroit's had casinos, 20% of *all* their small businesses have been wiped out. The same can be seen in Connecticut or wherever casinos are added. When 5% of players become addicted and "play to extinction" they don't contribute to the economy -- and when there's $5 or 10 buffets and free booze and liquor, restaurants and bars just can't compete. So for all those factors, casinos and slot parlors are clearly *bad policy,* whether you agree with them morally or not. You can honestly throw the morals right out the window and just ask yourself "what will make Massachusetts better?" The answer isn't slot machines.

Anonymous said...

Ban smoking and drinking. Those two activities are equally destructive.

Anonymous said...

It's true smoking is probably worse than anything when you add up the health care costs, but then the state wouldn't be collecting their unbelieveably high taxes. So it's not always what's the best thing for the citizens.

Anonymous said...

It's becoming trite the have the pro-casino/gambling/slots crowd continue to raise the same issues of addiction -- smoking, alcohol, the lottery, all of which are currently legal.

The issue isn't about what currently legal, but about expanding and legalizing what is currently NOT legal.

If you have a problem with the current costs of the addictions that are legal, maybe you should oppose expanding addictions to other things, like slots, casinos and racinos.

Perverse logic and specious arguments, brought to you by the sponsors of those industries!

Try again!

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