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Madera Citizens Pack Public Casino Meetings

12 August 2004

CALIFORNIA – As reported by the Madera Tribune: "County citizens packed the supervisors chambers Monday morning to hear the plans for a new casino which may be built along State Route 99, and the provisions in the memorandum of understanding that promises about $80 million to various city and county entities over the next 20 years. This was the first of two public hearings on the project.

"The project calls for a 305 acre tract of land that would house a 200,000 square foot entertainment complex. The cost of the project has been estimated at $225 million. Between 1,500 and 1,700 jobs are expected to be created, half of which will be filled by Madera County residents. The casino will have 2,000 slot machines, 60 gaming tables, a bingo room, and in conjunction with the hotel, a pool and spa.

"…The site chosen for the casino is along 99, between avenues 17 and 18. Although the tribe has considered a plot of land on the east side of 99, the preferred site, which is located on the west side of 99, makes it possible to either hook into city water and sewer infrastructure, or create a water source independent of the city.

"A presentation by Elaine Bethel-Fink, tribal chairperson, and representatives of Station Casinos and attorney for the tribe, John Maier, showed that the concerns the tribe has include minimizing the impact on surrounding neighborhoods, schools and churches. They also want to refrain from adversely impacting those casinos already in operation…"

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