Urban Casinos Would Blunt State's Woes
- February 1, 2004
Re "Casino Foe Plans a Third Initiative," Jan 28: Allow an increase in the number of slots at tribal casinos? Absolutely not. The chaotic system of tribal gaming has reached catastrophic proportions statewide, with off-reservation effects such as groundwater depletion, increased traffic accidents on substandard routes and local land-use planning running amok. Cropping up in the unincorporated areas, tribal casinos are equivalent to cities lacking a master plan. Fifty-four casinos, some with hotels, require water, wastewater removal capacity and emergency services to accommodate an average of 8,000 patrons per facility each day.
Urban tribal casinos should be one strategy of former Judge Daniel Kolkey's negotiations with the tribes, as a way to solve some of the state's woes. Improve air quality by keeping casino patrons close to home, preserve open space with in-fill development of casinos and reduce the burden of services on cash-strapped counties.
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