Here is what Dermot P. Nolan has to say about the Casino. This appeared in the Spectator “Letters to the Editor” and below this please see what Councillor Farr provided to the DNA. Please email your Councillor to let him know your thoughts and how very important this issue is to the future of our downtown or not!
Sam Merulla is to be commended for his opposition to a downtown casino.
The idea of infecting our recovering core with the cancer of a casino is anathema to any citizen who cares about Hamilton and rejoices in its rebirth as a flourishing centre of artists and visionaries. It would be like choosing death over life.
I have seen in my law practice the devastation wrought by our societal addiction to gambling. It feeds on the vulnerable and the desperate. The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation shamelessly institutionalizes that crime. I have examined OLG personnel under oath and delved into their charades – it pretends to be sensitive to problem gamblers but the measures they tout, such as the laughable “self-exclusion” program are a complete sham. They feed on these poor folks and the wreckage is stunning.
The suggestion that there is any positive economic spin off is a joke. Take a look around Windsor or Niagara Falls a block away from their casinos – or just have a look at what our downtown bingo hall contributes to the downtown or the local economy. The truth is, these places rot the community and destroy lives – and in fact destroy other productive businesses.
At the very least a referendum should be mandatory before any such thing is considered. This community spoke loudly and clearly when it rejected a casino in the 1997 referendum. I would suggest that neither the Province nor the City has any legal right to contravene that decision without the citizenry releasing them from that democratic expression of its will. The suggestion that the amalgamated city is not bound by the previous referendum is susceptible to a serious court challenge. The majority of the population of the old city is still the majority of the new and that majority has spoken.
It would be an affront to democracy to ignore that.
At our last Board meeting, the DNA asked for Councillor Farr’s postion….here is his response.
Casino initiative and your position:
I am looking forward to the upcoming delegation from OLG and the Great Gaming Company. I stand by the unanimous vote from council to support Flamborough.
I will soon be sending out an automated phone pole to all Ward 2 residents asking two simple questions. Do you support a Casino? Do you support a Casino Downtown. Also – If time permits, I will hold a Town Hall on the matter. I will keep you posted.