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Gene Beaudoin Pushes for Slot Machine Approval for Scarborough Downs

On August 11th, 2008, the developer who has proposed a new town facility near Scarborough Downs will start a new petition drive this fall which aims at getting the approval of the residents for the slot machines at the harness racing track. Gene Beaudoin, a partner in Feldco Development Corporation of New Canaan, Connecticut, who proposed this concept for Scarborough Village to the Town Council, commented that the petition drive will start after a series of public information meetings.

The Scarborough Village would introduced a Main Street atmosphere to area around the racing track and would feature a brand new public safety establishment, a community center and senior center as well as an office and retail facility. Town officials commented that Beaudoin's development organization, which includes Sharon Terry, the racing track's presidents, needs at least 2,206 valid signatures to put the slots issue before the Scarborough voters. The vote could take place during the general election on November 4th, 2008 or on a special election year.

Beaudoin, who developed the brand new Cabela's store in Scarborough, commented that he is still not sure whether his organization will target the November elected but he said that he has no doubt that racino supporters will get enough signatures for the initiative. Revenue coming slot machines would help produce the estimated $20 million needed to install sewer, water and power line on the two hundred thirty-five acre tract between Route one, Haigis Parkway and Payne Road.

The lack of needed infrastructure is one of the main reasons why the Scarborough Downs land has not been well developed. No one from the audience commented during Beaudoin's presentation but some town councilor offered some suggestions. Chairman Jeffrey Messer commented that he had received telephone calls from residents who are concerned about the proposal of Beaudoin.

Back in 2003, voters gave their approval to a statewide ballot question that gave permission to slot machines near racing tracks. Scarborough voters dismissed a proposal that would allow slot machines in their town.


Monday, 01 September 2008
Theo Evans