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Bethlehem Pro-Casino Campaigners Get Personal

14 September 2005

BETHLEHEM, Pennsylvania – As reported by the Morning Call: "If the mass advertising campaign, the volunteers going door-to-door and the $50,000 Musikfest sponsorship weren't enough, investors on Tuesday added a personal touch to their effort to bring gambling to Bethlehem.

"Barry Gosin, chief executive officer of Newmark & Co., the company that helped remake the SoHo and TriBeCa neighborhoods in New York, traveled to Bethlehem on Tuesday to meet with Councilmen Joseph Leeson Jr. and Gordon Mowrer. Leeson and Mowrer propose a zoning change that would ban a slots parlor from the former Bethlehem Steel land where an $879 million casino, hotel, shopping and residential development is proposed.

"The CEO house calls were the latest in a two-week full-court press by BethWorks Now and its partner, Las Vegas Sands, in advance of a City Council vote next week on the zoning change. The campaign started with a $50,000 sponsorship at Musikfest in August, continued with a 12-page booklet of the project stuffed in nearly 30,000 Bethlehem area newspapers last week and continued this week with an automated telephone campaign designed to transfer gambling supporters directly into the City Council switchboard.

"With the vote set for Tuesday, City Council members are experiencing the kind of big-time lobbying usually directed at state legislators and members of Congress…"

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