As new plans emerged for a casino in South Bend, locals are expressing the reasons why they support and oppose the idea.
US.- Ever since the native tribe Pokagon Band of Potawatomi obtained in December the land-into-trust application for a 160-acre plot in Indiana, critics and supporters have been expressing their opinion regarding the plan.
As reported by the South Bend Tribune, Mike Hosinski, former owner of Union Pier Bench and Table, said: “With all the great stuff the area had, we used to call it The Hamptons of Lake Michigan, we didn’t need it. And we didn’t need to compete with it. I don’t think the casino has had the negative impact that we all kind of imagined,” said Hosinski, who added that the Pokagon tribe has been extremely responsible in New Buffalo.
Michelle Heit, New Buffalo Township supervisor said that casino business has been good to the local economy: “An increased number of people [has come] to our area. We also have the Local Revenue Sharing Board and the Pokagon Fund, from which we have benefited greatly.”
Common treats among opponents to the plan include noise, traffic, crime and bankruptcy problems. Owner of a gift ship in downtown Jessica Conrad said that New buffalo is not a casino town. “The casino gives people something to do, but there’s a lot to do in Harbor Country outside of the casino.”
According to Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG), the Four Winds Casino in South Bend will cause a US$350 million fall on Indiana’s tax revenues in the first five years of functioning. The report commissioned by the Casino Association of Indiana (CAI) establishes that the tribal casino will cost other casinos in the state over US$800 million in revenue by detracting its customers, and it will drop revenue from gambling taxes approximately US$280 million, as well as US$73 million in income taxes.