Stephen Crosby Cleared of Wrongdoing by Ethics Commission

A win for the gaming chairman.

Steve Crosby

Massachusetts Gaming Commission Chairman Steve Crosby photo by UMASS Boston

A challenge to the integrity of the head of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission has been dismissed by the state’s  public ethics watchdog.

The complaint lodged against MGC Chairman Stephen Crosby was dismissed by the State Ethics Commission this week. Crosby broke the news in an email to the MGC’s staff:

“I would also like to take this opportunity to personally inform you that the Ethics Commission has dismissed the complaint against me and will not proceed with further action. Although it is profoundly discouraging to have my integrity or that of the process called into question, this development yet again substantiates our pledge to operate in a “participatory, transparent and fair” manner. Like any organization, we must always strive for improvement, but I sincerely believe that we are demonstrating how the best public policy decision making can be done, in a uniquely transparent and participatory manner. Our agency will remain committed to those fundamental principles, and when necessary, we will staunchly defend our commitment to those principles,” said Crosby in an email to staff obtained by Boston. 

The complaint against Crosby revolved around his self-proclaimed recusal from the licensing process for the lone eastern Massachusetts casino license. An unidentified person submitted a sworn statement to the commission alleging Crosby did not truly recuse himself from the process and violated state conflict of interest laws after it was revealed that he had a prior relationship with one of the landowners at the center of the Wynn Resorts project in Everett. Wynn  eventually beat out a proposal from Mohegan Sun for a casino at Suffolk Downs in Revere for the Region A license.

Several lawsuits against the commission have been filed in the aftermath of the licensing process.

In a letter to Crosby, the SEC said that they terminated their preliminary investigation into the complaint because of a “lack of evidence” against Crosby.

Crosby’s fellow commissioners circled the wagons around the chairman at a meeting of the commission las week.