The Spokesman-Review

Letters to the Editor

Let Vegas stay in Vegas

I don’t know about you, but I have no interest in allowing the Spokane region to become a “mini-Vegas.” That is what could happen if we allow the Spokane Tribe to build their proposed off-reservation casino in the West Plains.

This is not the type of economic development that will grow high-quality jobs and enhance our quality of life. The Spokane Tribe already has two casinos that they can expand in any way and create a successful destination resort like the Coeur d’Alene Tribe has done, but they are simply looking for a better location closer to the Spokane market.

I don’t believe granting an exception for a third casino, off reservation, is the right thing. I have seen, firsthand, what concentrations of gaming can do to local communities. I grew up near Tunica, Miss., and saw the proliferation of casinos explode in the area under the guise of economic development and jobs for a rural, chronically unemployed county.

Twenty years and many casinos later, the county remains mired in economic malaise. I appeal to our elected officials not to let this sad situation happen in our community.

Hal Patton


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