Editorial: Approve Little River Band off-reservation casino

A large crowd turned to support the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians in at a Bureau of Indian Affairs public hearing in Fruitport Township, Michigan, on October 15, 2015. Photo from Muskegon Casino / Twitter

Citing strong local support, Michigan newspaper calls on the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the state of Michigan to approve a $180 million off-reservation casino for the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians:
We fully support quick state and federal approval of the Fruitport casino. We continue to strongly oppose a downtown casino that remains a possibility with a Grand Rapids-based tribe seeking federal recognition. Planned for valuable waterfront property, downtown is the wrong place.

The community advantages of a local casino seem obvious to us from construction activity, 1,200 significant new jobs, spin-off development, a boost to our growing tourism industry and revenue-sharing opportunities for schools and local governments.

The downside of casinos is well documented as a casino right down the street can trap those with addictive behaviors. But as alcoholics must live in communities with bars and liquor stores, we cannot outlaw or restrict all activities that some find troublesome. Gambling must be treated like other addictions.

As we ask for quick approval from federal and state authorities, we recognize that the casino issue in Muskegon has been a long struggle. It frustratingly has had no success with more government inaction and the likelihood of resistance from competing tribal casinos on the horizon.

Get the Story:
Editorial: Let's get the Indian casino in Fruitport going before it's too late (MLive/Muskegon Chronicle 11/15)

Federal Register Notice:
Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Proposed Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Fruitport Casino Project, Fruitport Township, Muskegon County, Michigan (September 21, 2015)

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