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Sun., March 24, 2013

Can’t ignore casino risk

In his March 17 op-ed, Mayor Patrick Rushing of Airway Heights disingenuously says we should have an open and transparent dialogue regarding the facts of encroachment that could cause Fairchild Air Force Base to lose the chance to host the new tanker or, worse, get shut down in another round of base closures as the nation’s defense budget continues to get slashed. We have to remember, Fairchild has been on the list before.

So, why is the mayor ignoring the fact that in the U.S. Air Force’s own Joint Land Use Study it identified the Spokane Tribe’s proposed mega-resort-casino complex, including the hotel tower they plan to build, a “critical” threat based on its non-compatibility with the base? The Spokane Tribe’s own documents declare that noise from overhead flights on the site will be so bad that they have the “potential to produce vibration in existing structures in the immediate vicinity of the project site and cause human health effects.”

Rushing and other apologists for the mega-casino would like everyone to conveniently ignore those stubborn facts: This proposed casino puts the base’s current and future operations at risk.

Irv Zakheim


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