Saturday, January 5, 2008


There’s a player out there in pro-casino land by the name of Fact Finder - who is actually a guy named Brian Giovanoni - who headed up a committee this summer charged with analyzing potential casino impacts - a committee which which would eventually come to be known as the Committee to Dismiss Public Input.

But, at that first meeting, I was impressed with Brian. He seemed to take his original charge very seriously, and at the end of the night went around the table asking all of us all why we were there, and if we had questions. And that’s the first opportunity I had to tell him and everybody else that I was from Bridgewater, and that there was concern about this project in the surrounding communities. Not that it mattered for much in the months to come.

One thing you can say about Brian is that he has a lot of energy. Unfortunately he expends much of it on extensive and colorful calculations, convoluted explanations and definitive proclamations that “prove” a casino is a good and righteous thing for both his town and ours.

Having had quite enough of the Committee to Dismiss Public Input, it’s shallow research, pat answers and conviction that all impacts could be mitigated with enough money, I seldom feel the need to visit Brian’s blog. But today a friend alerted me to a new post in which Brian appears to suggest that we in the surrounding communities should not only not be griping about potential impacts, we should actually be genuflecting to Middleboro for its magnanimous foresight in courting the casino industry to our region.

By signing the agreement with the Wampanoags, according to Brian, Middleboro “single-handedly fixed the traffic problems which has thwarted full economic development in the region.”

Wow. Should I send them a thank you card?

Turns out that Middleboro is already sharing it’s mitigation money with the rest of us in the form of the $172 million dollar Rte. 44 reconstruction project – which will supposedly spur economic growth and tourism in the region.

Then Brian takes it a step further and lists the numerous things on which $172 million could have been spent if Middleboro had kept it all to themselves - and not shared it with us. Like, for instance, a new $20,000 car for everyone in town, or 172 new ladder trucks, or paying everyone’s sewer or water bill for 30 years, or 172 years of curbside trash pickup or three new schools. His astonishing list goes on…

Brian not only chugs the Kool-aid, apparently he’s tapped a big keg of it in his backyard and wants us to come to the party.

Let me sprinkle some snow on this poppy field.

Rte. 44 highway reconstruction will be paid for with taxes. That means WE will ALL pay for it. This doesn’t exactly make it manna from heaven. Additionally, Brian's $172 million doesn’t seem to cover any reconstruction to 495. Additionally, it doesn’t pay for mitigation for the burden of increased traffic down secondary roads leading to the proposed site (like mine). And it doesn’t pay for increased law enforcement or emergency services that surrounding towns will need in order to deal with the increases in DUI’s and accidents we can expect. And, with 50,000+ additional cars on our roads, who’s going to pick up their curbside trash? You, Brian?

As for spurring economic development – doesn't he really mean siphoning off existing business?

I once attended a forum in Carver and watched as Brian went to the microphone, again and again, to assure residents that a casino would, among other things, help their town explore new and exciting economic opportunities - such as scorching the earth on either side of Rte. 44 so they could sprinkle it with Econolodges and Red Roof Inns. And for a moment there, it seemed as if those 160+ people wanted to leap on Brian and tear him limb from limb.

Poor Brian. He means well. He just doesn’t understand that some people actually care about their quality of life. And he's apparently oblivious to his own arrogance.

And as for allowing for the “smooth flow to and from Route 495 from Routes 28, 18 and 44 for all to use” as Brian suggests – I suggest Brian sit in slow-moving traffic behind an exhaust-belching casino tour bus just like I did on a field trip to Ledyard.

And finally, no one was ever going to give anyone $172 million for schools or new cars or trash pick-up. This has all been about servicing a casino - which does a disservice to surrounding communities and leaves us like beggars at the door seeking a hand-out from the state for "mitigation" for a whole slew of problems we didn't have to begin with.

So really Brian, thanks for that.


Anonymous said...

I have also come to thc conclusion that Brian is totaly one sided. I recently emailed him, at his request, regarding impacts that my family will suffer from the casino. ALL of them were brushes aside. His quote was "I am not going to argue with you" In other words, it's his opinion or nothing. I even invited him to come by and visit our neighborhood, which will be directly affected by the construction of a huge casino entance ramp. I have not gotten a response.

cdplakeville said...

Yes, thank you Brian. His symptoms are from being on C.R.A.C. (Casino Resort Advisory Committee). Kool-Aid is a gateway drug to C.R.A.C. Such delusional musings that he has are a sad byproduct. Gullibility, confusion and paranoia are common symptoms for those on C.R.A.C. He seems helpless at times, looking for help in finding impacts to be mitigated and can't look under his own nose. Blindness sets in with C.R.A.C. Hopefully he will get help and get off C.R.A.C. and Kool-Aid and see the light of real casino impacts. Thanks, Gladys, for being the nosy neighbor.

Anonymous said...

cdplakeville, You neglected the over-inflated and grossly undeserved ego that comes with Brian's trip.
In Brian's stupor, no one else's opinions matter. Try to have a conversation with Brian. There is no conversation. It's monologue and pontification.
Brian knows best and please don't forget it. Facts be damned!

Gladys Kravitz said...

"Kool-aid is a gateway drug to C.R.A.C."... that's a good one, cdplakeville!

I've pretty much given Brian a free pass on this blog because he's not an elected official, but for him to suggest that we in the surrounding towns should somehow be greatful to Middleboro and a mega resort casino for solving the region's traffic issues - it's too much! Jeesh! The Chutzpah!

Luv and Indignation,

Anonymous said...

My husband and I each submitted those forms and each listed 4 different concerns that we knew others wouldn't raise.
We didn't raise ANY issue that was addressed in the superficial report that Brian prepared.
Did he just discard what he didn't want to address?
That committee was hand-picked to produce the conclusion that the Kool Aid drinkers wanted. We just didn't figure it out how corrupt the process was.
C.R.A.C. and Kool Aid? Good work!

Anonymous said...

If Brian was an Indian, he would be called Dances With Facts.

On his most recent blog he promises that he "will continue my positive work for this community".

This is very magnanimous and sounds much better than the first draft which read "I will continue to work on behalf of the casino and call casino opponents IGNORANT LIARS without actually pointing out what they are lying about."

Anonymous said...

In the TROUBLES of the last year, we have learned much about those who suddenly find themselves in leadership roles and start sounding like boobs.
Should we dub it the 'Adam Bond Syndrome'?

carverchick said...

Ahhh, Gladys. I am so happy that you responded to his kool-aid delusion. I too got the email abou his blog and could not believe what I was reading. Your right...WE, the taxpayers will be paying for an exit ramp that we don't want to a casino that we don't want. So I guess those environmental impacts will extend beyond the "reservation land". I could go on and on about his so called facts, but I think you covered it all quite well! I must say, got a real kick out of how he spun the rt. 44 construction as doing us all a favor....

Hey Brian...we are asking Middleboro to please not do us any more favors, okay?

carverchick said...

Oh, by the way anonymous space actually SAVES kudos to those towns who preserve open space instead of sign an agreement to develop and pave over 350 acres of pristine land.