The Global View

Massachusetts ditches casino for $50 million green jobs

casino.jpgThere’s good news and there’s bad news. Which do you want first? Bad news? Greenbang always does in that order too. So, the bad news (and, hey, it may not even be that bad if you’re not a fan of the occasional flutter) is that Sal DiMasi, Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, wants to kill off a bill that would bring casinos to the region. And now for the good news: instead, DiMasi wants to spend the cash on green jobs instead. Phew.

And the cash isn’t a drop in the ocean either. According to local papers, DiMasi will create the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center and set aside $50 million for it, as well as establishing a Clean Energy Seed Grant Program to set about distributing grants of between $2 million and $5 million per year.

And the list goes on. There’ll be a Clean Energy Fellowship program to train up local entrepreneurs, a Green Jobs Initiative which will invest up to $2 million a year in the area’s universities and colleges to make sure there’s enough green collar workers around to support the plan.

According to boston.com, this is what the man himself said:

Here in Massachusetts, we have a natural clean energy cluster – the University of Massachusetts, MIT, and Harvard are leaders in the movement and are educating the leaders and innovators of the future. […]

And throughout the state, we have workers ready to capitalize – to manufacture green products, to test green facilities, to continue green research.

Greenbang likes casinos, but she likes this plan an awful lot more.