Elections | Oregon | Politics

Casino Proponents Know When To Fold'em

OPB | Oct. 16, 2012 2:19 p.m. | Bend, Oregon

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The supporters of two Oregon ballot measures that would open the door for non-tribal casinos in the state, say they’re suspending that campaign.  In a statement Tuesday, the casino backers acknowledged the measures appear unlikely to pass.

For months, Oregon airwaves have been inundated with ads both for and against Ballot Measures 82 and 83.

Measure 82 would amend the constitution to allow non-tribal casinos and requires those casinos to give a percentage of their revenue to the state lottery. Measure 83 would authorize such a casino in Multnomah County, at Wood Village.

Now, casino supporters say they’re stopping all ad buys.

Campaign manager Stacey Dycus wouldn’t answer questions about why.  But the campaign’s statement put it this way.

“… it appears to the campaign team that not enough Oregon voters are ready to add a private casino to the state’s gaming options.”

The statement goes on to say “…the final decision is up to voters and we will continue to hope for the best on Election Day”.

The campaign opposing the measures says it plans to quote “continue educating voters about the realities of these measures.”


PRESS RELEASE

MEASURES 82 & 83 PROPONENTS SUSPEND CAMPAIGN

(Wood Village, OR—October 16, 2012)  Proponents of ballot measures 82 and 83 announced today that they are suspending campaign operations and will no longer be running paid communications in support of a proposed Wood Village casino.

“We knew when we began this process that it would be a challenge to break the existing political and gaming monopoly in Oregon, but we also knew that there was a great opportunity to create a unique entertainment destination in Wood Village that provided jobs and new revenues for schools and public services.

We appreciate the opportunity to have worked with Oregon businesses and organized labor to advance this campaign – and there are many people we want to thank.  We want to thank the tens of thousands of everyday Oregonians who have embraced The Grange and shared their ideas and enthusiasm with their friends and others through social media. We want to thank the city leaders of Wood Village who took the time to thoughtfully review plans for The Grange and lent their advice and support.

We want to thank the individual Oregonians who have endorsed The Grange and lent their names, faces, voices and reputations to our cause and our advertising. We want to thank the union members and small business leaders who share our vision for the thousands of jobs with health care and millions in additional revenues for Oregon. And we want to thank our hard-working campaign staff who embraced an inspirational vision of what could be and communicated this vision in a positive, straightforward manner. 

Despite the enthusiasm that has greeted us as we literally made our way across Oregon, in the last few weeks it appears to the campaign team that not enough Oregon voters are ready to add a private casino to the state’s gaming options. Despite this, we continue to strongly believe a tax-paying casino would benefit Oregon’s economy and schools, which are both in great need.  We would all be honored to be partners in an entertainment destination and casino that showcased the best that Oregon has to offer.

In the end, the final decision is up to voters, and we will continue to hope for the best on Election Day. We believe we have made a positive, compelling case for a casino and entertainment center that truly would be fun for you and good for Oregon.  Over the next three weeks we urge everyone to carefully review the voter’s pamphlet, our website and campaign materials from both sides of the campaign and make up their own minds.

Regardless of the end result, we remain grateful for the opportunity to present our proposal and thankful to all those who have joined us in this effort.”

The Grange is a proposed casino and family-friendly entertainment center developers hope to build on the site of the old Multnomah Greyhound Park in Wood Village.

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