The casino proposals are not gone. As this article by John Simerman of the Contra Costa Times shows, we are winning, but the battle has just begun. I will continue to keep you informed of the ongoing hearings and issues as they develop.
Long odds for casinos in East Bay
Scotts Valley, the Guidiville Band of Pomo Indians and Lower Lake Rancheria-Koi Nation face long odds for casino rights in North Richmond, Richmond and Oakland -- even if the local communities warm to the idea.
"What people don't understand is how difficult this really is," said Michael Derry, who heads the Guidiville band's economic development company. "Not everybody's going to make it."
Most likely none of them will, said George Forman, an attorney for several California tribes.
"A 50 to 1 shot just won the Kentucky Derby. I don't have a way of putting a number on it," said Forman, "except to say that what is being asked hasn't really been done before."
The tribes' chances didn't improve any last week, when Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger fired a warning shot at a raft of urban casino proposals in California.
The governor formally pledged to oppose all of them -- except for two tribes that already have federal rights to gaming land.
One of the two is the Lytton Band of Pomo Indians, which has a deal with Schwarzenegger for a casino with as many as 2,500 slots in San Pablo, but no approval from the Legislature. The other, Federated Indians of the Graton Rancheria, hopes to build a casino near Rohnert Park in Sonoma County.
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