Ex-Rep. Smith’s sentencing imminent
The unofficial word from Boston is that ex-Rep. Stat Smith, who forfeited his House seat because he has admitted that he is guilty of voter fraud, may be sentenced Friday in federal court. The prosecutors have asked for a six-month prison sentence, although he technically could receive up to two years behind bars. Smith will also be barred from running for elective office for five years.
Is a casino “complication” brewing?
Boston Mayor Tom Menino caused quite a stir earlier this week, making a claim that, if true, could really complicate plans for a proposed Everett casino. The State House News Service has reported that Menino is alleging that Boston “owns” part of the 37-acre Everett site where Vegas mogul Steve Wynn wants to build a billion dollar casino/hotel resort. Menino contends that according to his city’s assessing department records, there is a commercial parcel of about 46,000 square feet – within Boston’s boundaries – that extends across the Mystic River and runs along the former Chemical Lane in Everett. It is anybody’s guess right now if Mayor Menino is accurate or just giving local officials the needle since he’s a strong supporter of the Suffolk Downs casino plan that is competing with Everett for the sole casino license in the Greater Boston area. But if there is some-thing to his claim, it could make things very interesting. By the way, the deadline for filing casino proposals with the state gambling commission is next Tuesday (Jan. 15). As of press time, the Wynn Group hadn’t yet filed its application.
Panarese new school committee chairman
Allen Panarese, a veteran six term member of the school committee, was promoted earlier this week by his colleagues to serve as chairman of the body for 2013. He had been serving as vice-chairman. The vote to elevate him to the top leadership post on the school panel was unanimous, as was the vote to elect Frank Parker as the new vice-chairman.