Misconduct Allegations Against Wynn Spark Questions for Everett Casino

The Wynn Boston Harbor is slated to open in 2019

The Wynn Boston Harbor is expected to open in 2019, but the latest scandal with Steve Wynn has some wondering if it will affect the future money maker of Everett.

The fallout continued Saturday as Steve Wynn resigned from his position as finance chairman of the Republican National Committee.

Allegations of sexual misconduct first surfaced against Wynn, the CEO of Wynn Resorts, in a Wall Street Journal report published Friday afternoon. In the report, a number of women say they were harassed or assaulted by the casino mogul.

Everett city leaders were quiet this weekend, but many are wondering what this all means for the casino's opening.

Boston College Professor Rich McGowan, who studies gambling and casinos, says he doesn’t see any legal grounds for the license in Everett to be rescinded.

“If you’re sitting in the city of Everett right now, the last thing you want is all of a sudden this big casino which is going to be the salvation of the city of Everett now going to go down the drain,” said McGowan.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has said it’s reviewing the company’s license.

"The Commission is now aware of and is taking very seriously the troubling allegations detailed in the Wall Street Journal article," Massachusetts Gaming Commission Director of Communications Elaine Driscoll said in a statement to NBC10 Boston. "The suitability and integrity of our gaming licensees is of the utmost importance, and ensuring that suitability is an active and ongoing process. Consequently, the MGC’s Investigations and Enforcement Bureau will conduct a regulatory review of this matter to determine the appropriate next steps."

If Wynn used any company money to settle any complaints, that could affect the gaming license. 

“Where that money came from makes all the difference in the world,” said McGowan. “I don’t think they could accuse Wynn of raiding his business to pay people off, that’s not the way he operates.”

But Celeste Ribeiro Myers, one of the leaders of the effort against casinos in Massachusetts, says the allegations of sexual harassment in this time of #metoo and #timesup could play a role in any decision by the gaming commission.

“I think that this is a trend that we’re seeing across the nation,” said Myers. “People are taking these kinds of issues very seriously and they’ll act on it, and it’s not just lip service.”

NBC10 Boston spoke to multiple Everett City Council members over the phone Saturday and was told they will release a statement Monday.

Wynn has denied the allegations against him, blaming his ex-wife for stirring up trouble because of a contentious divorce.

"The idea that I ever assaulted any woman is preposterous," Wynn said in a statement to NBC News. "We find ourselves in a world where people can make allegations, regardless of the truth, and a person is left with the choice of weathering insulting publicity or engaging in multi-year lawsuits. It is deplorable for anyone to find themselves in this situation."

He said his ex-wife, Elaine Wynn, has "explicitly threatened to slander and destroy me," adding he was "surprised" by the report because it will "be used to advance this agenda."

Mass. Gov. Charlie Baker has said in a statement that he is "deeply disturbed by these allegations and expects them to be taken seriously. This administration has a zero tolerance policy for sexual harassment and expects the Commonwealth’s employers to create a safe work environment for all employees where reporting harassment of any kind is encouraged and properly addressed."

Wynn Resorts stock dropped 10 percent following the WSJ's report Friday afternoon, according to CNBC.

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