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Bethlehem Approves Slots

20 September 2006

BETHLEHEM, Pennsylvania – As reported by the Morning Call: "The majority of Bethlehem City Council is willing to roll the dice that a casino will jump-start the redevelopment at the former Bethlehem Steel plant but council is not taking any chances with the nuisance businesses that may try to open near a slots casino.

"Pawn shops, check-cashing businesses, massage parlors and other adult-oriented businesses would have to stay at least 5,000 feet — nearly a mile — from the slots casino and adhere to a list of restrictions according to the proposal council supported early today with a vote of 5-2.

"…Council also voted to amend the zoning laws to allow gambling in the industrial redevelopment district which covers the 124 acres of the former plant where developers want to put a casino.

"…The decision, which council must reaffirm on second reading in two weeks, came after nearly five hours of passionate pleas from mostly casino opponents. Hundreds packed Bethlehem City Hall and 30 others sang hymns and prayed outside…"

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