Meetings & Information


Tuesday, August 31, 2010

MGM Resorts Tanks

MGM MIRAGE (MGM): Down 29% Since John Paulson Bought In the Quarter Ended on 2010-06-30

John Paulson added to his holdings in Gambling company MGM MIRAGE by 9.5% during the quarter ended 06/30/2010. He owned 43,800,000 shares of as of 06/30/2010. MGM Resorts International, formerly known as MGM MIRAGE, is a global hospitality company, operating a portfolio of destination resort brands, including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage. Mgm Mirage has a market cap of $4.15 billion; its shares were traded at around $9.4 with and P/S ratio of 0.6.

MGM recently reported its second quarter 2010 results. Operating loss for the second quarter of 2010 was $1.0 billion compared to operating income of $131 million in the second quarter of 2009.

Payments To "Foxwood's" Tribal Members To End

Lost amidst the Gambling Vultures Feeding Frenzy on Beacon Hill, the article below was overlooked.

It might be suggested that the revenue surging across the border has diminished. Maybe the Beacon Hill Bobble Heads have lost their raison d'etre.

Saturday, July 10, 2010
Tribal Payments To Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Members To End In Six Months

The approximately $100,000 that each Mashantucket Pequot adult receives each year will be ending in six months, according to a letter by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Council which was obtained by The Day newspaper.

The Feather News has heard rumors to this effect for the past two months (from the flying man and the mystical artist) but it has not been reported publicly until today.

The Mashantucket Pequots have a $700 million credit line coming due next week and the Tribe is negotiating with their creditors over their inability to pay that off which seems to be the main reason why the Tribe has announced the end of tribal payments to its members.

Today's front-page article in The Day newspaper, written by Brian Hallenbeck who covers the local Indian tribes, reports, "The payments, which are made to adult tribal members, have been significantly reduced in recent years but ranged last summer between $90,000 and $120,000 a year, on average, a tribal source said at the time."

Although the Tribe owes more than $2 billion, the $700 million line of credit that is coming due next week was loaned to the Tribe by a banking syndicate led by the Bank of America.

The Mohegan Tribe, meanwhile, has a credit line of $800 million that was loaned to its gaming arm and which comes due in two years. According to Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority conference calls with analysts, the Tribe hopes to have negotiated a plan with its creditors by the end of September. The Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority's total debt is about $1.6 billion.

Were two of the principle partners for Trading Cove Associates, the Mohegan Sun's former casino management company that is currently receiving five percent of the casino's revenues as a result of a buyout agreement that ends in four-and-a-half years, demanding to be seen at the tribal government building this week?

Both tribes hold a casino monopoly in Connecticut and generate between $2 billion to $3 billion in revenues from the casinos on the two reservations.

Monday, August 23, 2010

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #14 Taxes


Foxwoods is located in Ledyard. After the
Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation won federal recognition, the Tribe began
purchasing land within the boundary of its reservation. Its massive casino
complex and parking garages were built within those boundaries.

problem for Ledyard is that as the land was placed onto the reservation, it fell
off the local property tax rolls. The town estimated that its loss of property
tax revenue in 2008 was more than $2 million. The figure was arrived at by
computing land values. No value was assigned for the casino buildings

According to Ledyard Tax Assessor Paul Hopkins, the Tribe
goes through a process called annexation. It files an application with the US
Department of the Interior to place the land into trust once it purchases the
property. Hopkins said the town is not even made aware of the application. It
finds out if, and when, the application is approved.
– page 220 Spectrum
Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #13 DUIs

Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Arrests

With the tremendous increase in traffic in southeastern
Connecticut, so too has come an increase in DUI arrests. This is particularly
true for many of the municipalities near the two Indian casinos.

Norwich, for example, a municipality just north of the two casinos, had
129 DUI arrests in 1992; 252 in 2008. DUI arrests in Montville totaled 37 in
1992; 87 in 1997 and 116 in 2007.

The increases come at a time when DUI
arrests statewide have fallen. In 1992, they totaled 12,088. In 2005, they
declined to 9,874, a decrease of 18 percent.
– page 193-194 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Maine Casino Opposition

Casino opposition is growing nationwide as more people understand the Predatory nature of expanded gambling and its negative impacts on communities.
From our neighbors to the north --


Bring back Atlantic City as a beach resort

Bring back Atlantic City as a beach resort: poll

(Reuters) - New Jersey's Atlantic City should be brought back to life by refocusing on its sandy beaches and historic boardwalk rather than increasing state control of its casinos, a poll showed on Friday.

The poll accompanies debate in New Jersey on the future of its struggling gambling industry and ways to generate revenue to shrink the state's yawning budget deficit.

Republican Governor Chris Christie has said Atlantic City's role as a family playground could be improved with boardwalk amusement rides and the like.

But the former federal prosecutor's plan also calls for creating a new state authority to run the fading resort's gambling facilities. The plan proposes selling the Meadowlands racetrack or turning it into an off-track wagering site with no live races.

New Jersey voters said a state takeover of Atlantic City gambling was a bad idea by a margin of 46 percent to 33 percent, according to the Quinnipiac University Poll of 1,190 state residents.

"They want the place to be revived as a beach and boardwalk mecca," Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement. "Bring back romantic-enchantic Atlantic City, New Jerseyans say."

A Place Once Filled With Pride

This article reminds of the false promises of predatory gambling. How'd that work out? Not well one might say.


Detroit is about to get three gambling casinos. The casinos are being held up as the savior of the city. There is great excitement about the coming of the casinos--the three of them, according to projections, will generate gross annual revenues of $1.2 billion--and in a city that has often been on the ropes, that means something.

Actually, it would mean something for just about any city. That's why casinos are becoming so ubiquitous in this country. According to statistics provided by the gambling industry's lobbying group, 26 states now allow some form of casino gambling, and at last count there were 950 casinos in operation in the United States. During the last full year for which figures are available, casinos brought in $25 billion in total revenues.

And now, Detroit. As recently as 1995, Michigan state law did not permit casino gambling, but because of a push by gambling interests in Detroit a gambling initiative was put on the ballot, and prevailed. Two months ago Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer announced his selection of the three companies that will be allowed to open casinos.

A devastating development

'A devastating development for South Dakota.'

By legalizing video gambling, Illinois is poised to go down a path that led Sioux Falls, S.D., to accumulate mom-and-pop casinos, pawn shops and payday lenders on almost every major street.

The gambling outlets do not have clocks on the walls and curtains are drawn, leaving gamblers no hint of how much time they have spent inside, said De Knudson, a City Council member and wife of a gubernatorial candidate. Money is only a few steps away and snacks are free, so even gamblers' stomachs don't rebel.

Knudson said most residents she talks to have friends, relatives or co-workers with a video gambling problem.

The machines are "so convenient. They're everywhere. They're so addictive," she said. "Video [gambling] was a devastating development for South Dakota."

Illinois lawmakers, who passed video gambling months ago, and Gov. Pat Quinn, who signed it into law on July 13, had their eyes on the prize: a new revenue stream. They wanted tax money collected on the gambling to finance a construction program for roads, mass transit and schools that also would put people to work.

A statement from Quinn's office emphasized that video gambling will provide only one part of the funding for the effort expected to create 439,000 jobs over the next six years. It also said the law increased regulations and options for municipalities to prohibit video gambling.

Analysts say that as many as 45,000 machines could dot the state, reaping $300 to $641 million a year. The yield can be unpredictable, especially in light of a drop of nearly 15 percent in gaming revenues from casinos, the lottery and horse racing in Illinois last year.

Lawmakers passed video gambling without holding public hearings. If they had, they likely would have heard statistics about these effects:

* Easy accessibility leads to the notion that such gambling is socially acceptable, which promotes more frequent wagering.

* It takes about a year for video gamblers to become compulsive, compared to 3 1/2 years when betting on horses, sports, etc.

* More video gambling and lottery machines tend to be placed in poorer neighborhoods.

* Those with lower incomes are more prone to see wagering as a way out of economic misery.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #12 Crime

Crime: Embezzlements
No other state that reported 40 or more embezzlements in 1992 has had a higher percentage increase than Connecticut‘s 397 percent rise from that year to 2005. The state‘s increase is nearly 10 times that of the national average.

– page 142 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The embezzlements come with a heavy price tag. Embezzlers often face stiff prison terms. Their lives, and the lives of their families, are ruined. The businesses they leave behind often go bankrupt.

On August 3, 2007, three defendants appeared before Superior Court Judge Susan Handy to plead guilty to embezzlement charges that had a casino connection. The judge noted that she had seen far too many of these cases. She said there was a ―template for the defendants:
Female, typically middle-aged and older, who, up until now, had lived an exemplary life.
page 143 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Kevin O‘Connor was the state‘s US Attorney from 2002 to April 2007.
. . O‘Connor said he noticed a spike in embezzlements shortly after he took
office. “The FBI is spending a considerable amount of time on these cases,”
O‘Connor said, noting he became so concerned over the number of cases that he
instructed his press officer to indicate in press releases whether gambling
played a role in the embezzlement.

It wasn‘t just embezzlements,” O‘Connor said of the casino-related crime that was prosecuted on the federal level. “It was fraud, bank robberies and thefts as well. And over and over, we would learn that they were done to feed a gambling habit.”

Some of those non-embezzlement crimes included a Massachusetts woman, who was losing up to $3,000 a week at Foxwoods. She robbed three banks in Brookline, Massachusetts in 2001.
– page 145-146 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut”

No one knows better than Lawrence Tytla that embezzlements have
been on the rise. He is the Supervisory Assistant State‘s Attorney for New
London County. Tytla first started with the office in 1988. The motive then, he
noted, for embezzlements was to feed a drug habit; today it is to feed a
gambling habit.

Tytla said he is stunned by the type of people committing the embezzlements in southeastern Connecticut. “These are people that almost always never had a criminal record,” he noted. “They are upstanding citizens who gained the trust of their employers, who never suspected that they could have been victimized this way. They think they are the only ones this has happened to. What‘s astonishing is the magnitude of the embezzlements and how long they go undetected.”
– page 145-146 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #11 Low Wage Jobs

A study prepared for the Eastern Connecticut Chamber of Commerce in 2007 arrived at conclusions similar to ours. The study estimated that the two casinos were
responsible for a total of 29,040 jobs in 2007, about 10 percent less than our

Mohegan Sun employment by sector
Mohegan Sun executives provided us with a breakdown of average annual salaries by employee sector for 2007.

  • 52 senior management, $298,696
    108 directors, $104,502.
    535 managers $55,877
    741 supervisors, $42,745
    3,444 dealers and floor persons, $36,700
    593 games support, $26,124
    1,245 non-games floor support, $17,951
    2,114 non-gambling support, $22,189
    1,978 general support, $23,504

(note: this totals 10,810 jobs; 9374 (87%) of which pay at
or below $36,700; 5930 (55%) of which pay at or below $26,124)

123 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Foxwoods employment by sector
The data provided to us by casino management showed average
annual salaries for the following employee sectors at Foxwoods:
    • 14 senior management, $262,893
      66 directors, $114,327
      247 managers $70,391
      1,510 supervisors, $45,966
      3,207 dealers and floor persons, $20,536
      946 games support, $26,185
      830 non-games floor support, $19,816
      4,198 non-gambling support, $28,930
      283 general support, $36,464
(note: this totals 11,301 jobs; 9181 (81%) of which pay at or below
$28,930; 4037 (36%) of which pay at or below $20,536)

– page 124
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #10

Criminal Justice System and Illegal Behavior

Gambling addictions lead to financial problems and can eventually develop into desperate behaviors, many of which are illegal. In our telephone survey, we found that problem and probable pathological gamblers were significantly more likely than non-problem gamblers to have:

Written a bad check or taken money that did not belong to them to pay
for their gambling (13.7 percent vs. 0 percent)
Committed an illegal act to pay for a gambling debt (27.3 percent vs. 2.4 percent)
Considered committing an illegal act to finance gambling (8.2 percent vs. 0.6 percent)

Federal and state prosecutors in Connecticut are concerned over a significant increase in embezzlements. There were 43 embezzlement arrests in 1992, the year the first Indian casino opened. In 2007, there were 214. No other state that reported 40 or more embezzlements in 1992 has had a higher percentage
increase than Connecticut. The state‘s increase is nearly 10 times that of the national average. From 1997 to 2007, there were 1,853 embezzlement arrests in Connecticut. The extent of embezzlements is discussed in detail in another section of this report.
– page 77-78 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Overall Impact
As of July 1, 2007, there were 2,666,750 residents 18 or older in Connecticut. Our survey indicates a probable pathological gambling prevalence rate of 1.2 percent (lifetime NODS) to 1.5 percent (lifetime SOGS). The baseline estimate of for gambling losses is $13,586 per pathological gambler. It is a figure that has been used to determine the financial costs in several other gambling-impact studies. The losses of the pathological gamblers could therefore range from $435 million to $543 million.
– page 79 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

Gambling with safety

Gambling with safety

A Philadelphia man made headlines in June after leaving his 15-month-old son in a car while he gambled inside the Parx casino.

At the time, the story seemed like an extreme example of a problem gambler. Turns out, it's just another day at Parx.

A West Philadelphia mother was arrested recently for leaving her two daughters in a car while she gambled for six hours inside Parx. She became the fifth person charged this summer for leaving a child in a car while she gambled at the Bensalem casino.

The mother played the slots until after midnight. One daughter finally borrowed a cell phone from a customer in the parking lot to call her father. That's five confirmed incidents at one casino within weeks.

Who knows how many other gamblers slipped in and out of the casino while their kids waited in the car? Or how many children are left home alone or elsewhere unattended while their desperate parents pump money into the one-armed bandits? And how many other problem gamblers are quietly falling deeper and deeper into debt since Pennsylvania legalized gambling in 2004?

The casino industry argues that it provides entertainment and doesn't tolerate problem gamblers. The industry says the majority of gamblers come and go without blowing the rent money or leaving their kids locked in a car. And the industry touts services and programs it provides to help or prevent problem gambling.

At best, it's a passive approach. That's because regular, hard-core gamblers are the target market for casinos, especially the regional ones here that don't cater to tourists as Las Vegas does. It's not in the casinos' interest to chase away their best customers.

The fact that a parent can leave his or her child in a car for hours while he or she gambles shows that casinos sell something that can be as addictive as heroin or crack. And it's happening more often than the industry or regulators want to admit. At the very least, the casinos should post a guard to inspect cars entering the parking lot and patrol the lot for children trapped in cars before someone dies.

At the same time, a more proactive approach is needed to stop problem gamblers, not cater to them. The industry can't get away from the reality that casinos make an overwhelming majority of their profits off of a small percentage of repeat customers (read: addicted). Not to mention, casinos provide lots of incentives to keep gamblers coming back.

And gamblers lose far more often than they win - otherwise the casinos wouldn't be in business and Pennsylvania wouldn't be raking in buckets of tax revenue that makes lawmakers' eyes light up.

But here's the dirty secret that no one likes to discuss: Thanks to Gov. Rendell & Co., the commonwealth is now an enabling partner in an addictive industry that destroys lives and drives parents to lock their kids in the car for hours while they play the slots.

There's nothing entertaining about that.

Monday, August 16, 2010

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #9

The National Opinion Research Center (NORC) in its report to the NGISC

  • The availability of a casino within 50 miles (versus 50 to 250 miles)
    is associated with about double the prevalence of problem and pathological

The relationship between the proliferation of gambling and increased bankruptcies was studied by Stuart A. Feldman, President of SMR Research Corporation. In a 1999 presentation before the House Subcommittee on Commercial an Administrative Law regarding the increasing number of bankruptcies in America, Feldman noted that among other factors:

  • The spread of casino gambling appears to be a problem. When we look at bankruptcy rates in counties that have major gambling facilities in them, those rates are higher than in counties that have no gambling facilities. … On the county map in Nevada, the closer you come to Las Vegas and Reno, the higher the bankruptcy rate generally gets. In California, the highest bankruptcy rates are in San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, which are closest to Las Vegas, and the fourth highest rate often is in Sacramento County, closest to Reno. In New Jersey, Atlantic County, which is where the casinos are, typically has either the highest bankruptcy rate or one of the two or three highest in the state. In Tennessee, the bankruptcy rate is highest in Shelby County, the heart of Memphis, which is right across the state line from the Tunica MS casino gambling complex, reportedly the largest outside of Nevada.

– page 64 Spectrum Gaming
Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Other Addictive
Behaviors: Alcohol, Tobacco, Drugs
According to the National Research Council, problem gamblers are more likely than non-problem players to report problematic levels of consumption of drugs, alcohol and cigarettes.

A recent national study of lifetime gambling prevalence and comorbidity found that
73.2 percent of pathological gamblers had an alcohol-use disorder, 38.1 percent
had a drug use disorder, and 60.4 percent had nicotine dependence.
– page 69
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Impact on Relationships
In a study of family and problem gambling, Lorenz and Yaffee surveyed 206 married Gamblers Anonymous (GA) respondents about their medical and mental health and the health of their marital relationship during the desperation phase of their illness, when gambling was at its worse. This is when gamblers often alienate their friends and families.

During the desperation phase, 49 percent of the GA members indicated that their sexual relationship with their spouse was unsatisfactory, while 19 percent reported
that their dissatisfaction continued even after they had abstained from gambling. Lorenz and Shuttlesworth found that 50 percent of the respondents indicated that their spouses lost interest in sex during periods of heavy gambling.

They further reported that 48 percent of their 206 married GA respondents stated they had seriously considered having an extramarital affair during their desperation phase; 23 percent reported having done so. Fifty-nine percent indicated they thought about separating from their spouses, and one third of the respondents eventually did separate.
– page 71 Spectrum Gaming
Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Much of the scientific literature on the effects of problem gambling on the family focus on domestic violence, but this is just a small proportion of the harm being done to families. As summarized by one of the clinicians in our round-table session:

What people don‘t understand is the degree of preoccupation in the family. Normal activities around the house stop happening. People aren‘t eating together. People aren‘t talking to each other. People aren‘t nurturing each other, children not doing homework. These are chronic, high stress effects – diminished social family functioning that destroys the kids. As for the kids, they then start doing their own things to cope; they drink and do drugs.

In our telephone survey, we found:
51.8 percent of problem gamblers versus 23.3 percent of non-problem gamblers admitted to having a period of two weeks or longer in their lifetime when they lost interest in most things that they usually enjoyed
15.1 percent of problem gamblers versus only 0.2 percent non-problem gamblers admitted that gambling made them careless of their own welfare and that of their families

This lack of interest and family neglect can happen for a range of reasons. A member of Gamblers Anonymous told us in an interview: ―Gambling becomes everything to you.
– page 72 Spectrum
Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Because of the emotional strain, it is likely that a child of a pathological gambler will end up doing poorly in school, manifesting behavioral problems in the classroom or
failing to graduate. A supervisor at the Norwich Department of Social Services,
speaking as a representative of the department, told us about a number of
children misbehaving as a result of a parent‘s gambling problem.
– page 75
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

In our telephone survey, we asked respondents about the effect, if any, gambling had on their lives. The first figure is for gamblers; the second for non-gamblers.

  • difficulty sleeping (16.5 percent vs. 1.3 percent)
    irritability (18.8 percent vs. 7.8 percent)
    decrease in ambition (15.1 percent vs. 0.2 percent)
    loss of interest (51.8 percent vs. 23.3 percent)
    lost time from work(11.6 percent vs. 0.1 percent)
    affected reputation (5.9 percent vs. 0.3percent)

Prevalence studies are designed to measure the extent of
problem gambling in a general population. Categories include both problem and
pathological gambling. Although problem gamblers in our prevalence study are
significantly more likely to lose time from work, this is not the only cost to
the employer. It is assumed that an employee who is not absent is being
productive. However, even when employees are physically present at their jobs,
their work product may often be lacking in quality. It is a phenomenon referred
to as lost (work) productive time, and is characterized by:

  • Time not on task
    Decreased quality of work
    Decreased quantity of work
    Unsatisfactory employee interpersonal factors

These costs escalate the longer that
employees are unable to cope with the difficulties that may arise in their
personal lives. The compounding of problems is increased by the symptoms of the
addiction itself: difficulty sleeping, a loss of interest in anything but
gambling and a decrease in ambition.
– page 76 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

As of July 1, 2007, Connecticut‘s
population of residents 18 or older was 2,666,750. Between 60 and 63 percent of
problem and probable pathological gamblers are employed full-time based on our
prevalence study. We estimate that approximately 23,000 to 57,000 employees are
currently costing their employees money through below normal-work quality as a
direct result of problem gambling.
– page 77 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Medical Utilization
According to one research study (Morasco, et al. 1996), gambling severity has been found to be associated with higher rates of medical utilization, with pathological
gamblers more likely to have been treated in the emergency room in the past year
than low-risk individuals, even after controlling for demographic
characteristics, body-mass index, alcohol abuse and nicotine dependence.

The William W. Backus Hospital in Norwich is the hospital closest to the
two Connecticut casinos. Although its charity-care costs are relatively low as a
result of casino-provided health coverage for employees, the hospital has
experienced significant costs related to treatment of gamblers. Casino patrons
have suffered heart attacks, for example, at gaming properties. In some cases,
the patrons were either underinsured or not insured at all, causing the hospital
to sustain a significant loss of as much as $1 million.
– page 77 Spectrum
Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #8


Scientific literature associates problem gambling with the following financial troubles:51, 52

  • large credit-card debts
    second or
    even third mortgages
    illegal loans
    formal and/or informal loans
    loss of rent or mortgage funds
    of retirement funds

Sometimes, gamblers commit criminal acts to finance their gambling or pay gambling debts. 53,54

Our telephone survey compared the lifetime gambling habits of problem gamblers with those of non-problem gamblers:

62 percent gambled until their last dollar was gone compared to 12 percent for non-problem gamblers
29 percent gambled to pay off debts compared to 4 percent for non-problegamblers
13 percent sold possessions to finance gambling compared to 1 percent for non-gamblers
26 percent borrowed to finance gambling compared to 1 percent for non-gamblers

– page 58 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in
Connecticut” 2009

The federal bankruptcy forms used in Connecticut are of limited assistance because they do not indicate whether problem gambling was a factor. A problem gambler may have used a credit card or even a home equity line of credit, for example, to finance his or her gambling habit. The petition would not say whether such debt was gambling related.
Nonetheless, several bankruptcy lawyers in Connecticut told us that problem
gambling has indeed had an impact on bankruptcy filings, but quantifying that
impact would be difficult.

Attorney David F. Falvey, who has one of the largest consumer bankruptcy law practices in eastern Connecticut, said while it was rare for gambling to have played a factor in bankruptcy petitions prior to casinos, it is commonplace today.
– page 59 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The survey commissioned by Spectrum Gaming Group indicates that the bankruptcy rate for probable pathological gamblers was as high as 20 percent, five times the rate for non-problem gamblers. Another study of Gamblers Anonymous members found that 22 percent declared bankruptcy.

– page 63 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #7

Demographic Profiles: Connecticut Gamblers
Problem and probable pathological
gamblers are significantly more likely to be male (82 percent), 18-34 years old
(34 percent) and have some college education (48 percent).
– page 51
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The impacts of pathological gambling are complex and interconnected, ranging
from financial and legal to medical and psychological. Spectrum was asked to
look into Impacts on the Individual and Impact on the Family.

The reality is that impacts on the individual do not occur without impacts on the
family, the workplace and society as a whole. Many of the same impacts that
society sees on the individual, it also sees on others, especially loved ones.
– page 56 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

[Chart of page 57 - worth reviewing]

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #6

The percentage of past-year probable pathological gamblers in Connecticut is 0.6
percent; lifetime, 1.2 percent. The problem-gambler rates are understandably
higher: 0.8 percent for past-year; 2.1 percent for lifetime.

The combined rates for problem gamblers and probable pathological gamblers: 1.4
percent for the past year and 3.3 percent for lifetime (slightly lower than the
SOGS rates of 1.5 percent and 3.7 percent, respectively).

For at-risk gamblers, a category that does not exist on the SOGS screen, the past-year rate of 4.1 percent translates into 109,336 Connecticut adult residents. Lifetime, the figure is 192,006 for a rate of 7.2 percent.

Prevalence estimates using the NODS Screen are provided below with margin-of-error rates factored in:

Past Year Problem (0.8%) +/- (0.4%) 10,667 to 32,001
Past Year
Pathological (0.6%) +/- (0.3%)
8,000 to 24,001
Lifetime Problem (2.1%) +/- (1.2%) 24,001 to 88,003
Lifetime Pathological (1.2%) +/- (0.6%)
16,001 to 48,002

– page 47 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut”

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #5

Section II: Extent of Problem Gambling
Spectrum Gaming Group was contracted
to evaluate the incidence of chronic gambling as defined by Connecticut C.G.S.
Sec. 17a-713:
A person who is chronically and progressively preoccupied with
gambling and the urge to gamble and with gambling behavior that compromises,
disrupts or damages personal, family or vocational pursuits.

The definition is similar to that of the National Council on Problem Gambling which described problem gambling as behavior that causes disruptions in any major area
of life. It went on to say problem gambling included pathological or compulsive
gambling, a progressive addiction.

Although the overwhelming majority of Connecticut residents find gambling harmless entertainment and an enjoyable recreational activity, some regular gamblers develop significant problems that can also harm people close to them.
– page 39 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG)
“Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

Below, we convert the percent of problem and probable pathological gamblers into numbers of Connecticut residents 18 years or older who fall into the different categories based on the SOGS screen.

Probable pathological gamblers:
0.7 percent, past year
1.5 percent, lifetime 40,001

Problem gamblers:
0.9 percent, past-year 24,001
2.2 percent, lifetime 58,669

Combined rates for problem and probable pathological gamblers
1.6 percent, past year 42,668
3.7 percent, lifetime 98,670

– page 42 Spectrum Gaming Group
(SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #4

Problem Gambling
The results of the telephone survey yielded the following SOGS* lifetime numbers for probable pathological gamblers: 1.5 percent, (40,001 people) The results of the surveys yielded the following NODS* lifetime rates for probable pathological gamblers:
1.2 percent, (32,001 people)

Our telephone survey compared the lifetime gambling habits for problem and probable pathological gamblers with the gambling habits of non-problem gamblers:

  • 62 percent gambled until their last dollar was gone compared to 12 percent for non-problem gamblers
  • 29 percent gambled to pay off debts compared to 4 percent for non-proble gamblers
  • 13 percent sold possessions to finance gambling compared to 1 percent for non-gamblers
  • 26 percent borrowed to finance gambling compared to 1 percent for non-gamblers

Pathological gamblers are also more likely to suffer from
mental health conditions such as mood disorders, depression and anxiety
– page 15-16 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in
Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #3

State and federal law enforcement officials made 43 embezzlement arrests in 1992, the year the first Indian casino opened. In 2007, the most recent year that statistics are available, the number increased to 214. No other state that reported 40 or more embezzlements in 1992 has had a higher percentage increase than
Connecticut. The percentage increase in Connecticut from 1992 to 2007 is nearly
400 percent; nationwide the increase was 38 percent. The FBI and state crime
reports do not indicate how many of the embezzlements were gambling-related, but our research shows that many of those who stole from their employer used either part or all of the money to gamble at the two Indian casinos.
– page 14
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #2

Substandard housing, illegal conversions –
casino workers

With many casino workers unable to afford housing in southeastern Connecticut, some landlords have converted single-family homes into boarding facilities. The practice is not only illegal, it is unsafe as well.
– page 14 Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut”

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

CT: Spectrum Gaming Report #1

Norwich, the largest municipality in the region, is coping with a number of
problems. It is located within eight miles of both casinos. DUI arrests have
more than doubled since 1992. Montville and Ledyard have also experienced
significant increases. Roughly 20 percent of the motorists in Montville, Ledyard
and North Stonington arrested for DUI acknowledged to police that their last
drink was at a casino. One such motorist was charged with manslaughter in March
2009 for allegedly causing a fatal accident by driving the wrong way on I-395.

Norwich Public School administrators identified on a yearly basis nearly
$2 million in casino-related costs. In order to handle the influx of immigrant
workers attracted to casino jobs, the district had to create English for
Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program because students speak nearly 30
different languages. They come from Haiti, Peru, the Dominican Republic and
Eastern Europe. In addition, thousands of Chinese-speaking workers were
recruited from New York City in late 2001 to work at the casinos.
– page 13
Spectrum Gaming Group (SGG) “Gambling in Connecticut” 2009

The Spectrum Gaming Report prepared for the CT DOSR is availble on the United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts web site. It's worth reading.

What Lester Holt Showed about Chicago

Having witnessed OTB in New York State destroy a community, the repeating pattern by short-sighted political leaders around the country who accept this "Something for Nothing" scheme for the sake of a few gold coins is both pathetic and disappointing.

The information, the statistics, the reports are out there for public scrutiny.

Maybe a few will have the wisdom and integrity to stand tall and speak out.

What Lester Holt Showed about Chicago

In July 2006, I bought a small condo in Chicago’s South Loop and began calling the city my second home. I love Chicago. The city is so vibrant, at least the section where I live and the places where I wander and roam. But I know that for black people living in gang infested communities on the South Side, Chicago is a place where people grieve every day.

I was in Chicago on Sunday, July 18, 2010, when police officer Michael Bailey was murdered. My daughter Sylvia and I were getting ready to leave for Spencer Leak’s Funeral Home on the South Side, when we heard on the local news that a policeman had been shot.

We didn’t know the details as we drove to the funeral home where Spencer Leak, broadcasts his Sunday radio program, “It’s Time Truth Speaks.” I had been invited to talk about my book, CONFESSIONS OF A SLOT MACHINE QUEEN, and to state my opposition to a bill (which Governor Pat Quinn recently signed) that would repeal a forty-year ban on video gambling in bars and restaurants. When I later learned about the murder I thought, “No wonder there are so few black people protesting this proliferation of gambling throughout the city. They’re under siege.”

The Sunday, August 15, 2010, Dateline Special with Lester Holt showed just how burdened people in many South Side communities are. They’re dealing with a level of violence that is beyond comprehension. They’re trying to keep their children safe. They’re mourning the ones they lost. They’re trying to stop the violence.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Silly Season gets even sillier

Rolling laughter

The Aquinnah Tribe, feeling ignored by the media no doubt and longing for the limelight, announced their intentions to conduct a feasibility study for a SLOT BARN on the Vineyard.

The Vineyard for Pete's sake!

After the laughter died down, this article popped into view --

Camille Rose, Aquinnah selectman and a veteran member of the town planning board, said the prospect of a casino on the Island is just an empty threat.

Ms. Rose said much of the tribe’s undeveloped and available property is protected because it is sensitive conservation land subject to restrictions. She said construction, parking, and sewerage issues alone would be significant.

When you think of the infrastructure you would need, it’s absurd,” Ms.
Rose said.

“I think everybody on the Island understands that it would be
an impossibility, but they don’t know in Boston that it’s just not doable here, there is just no place,” she said. “There isn’t even a piece of land in town that you could buy that would be large enough.”

The Aquinnah tribe’s 1987 settlement agreement and a Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) decision in 2005 that upheld the basic tenets of that agreement have figured large in the casino discussion, and the notion that because the Aquinnah tribe has land in trust it has an advantage.

The 1983 settlement agreement that led to federal recognition of the Wampanoags, was signed by the tribe, the Gay Head Taxpayers Association (since renamed the Aquinnah/Gay Head Community Association Inc.), the town, and the state. It specifically provides that the settlement lands shall be subject to all federal, state, and local laws, including town zoning laws, state and federal conservation laws, and the regulations of the Martha’s Vineyard Commission.

In the winter of 2001, the Wampanoag tribe erected a small shed on the Cook property without a town building permit. The resulting legal battle reached the SJC.

In December 2004, the state’s highest court ruled that the tribe, then the only federally recognized tribe in Massachusetts, was not immune from zoning enforcement under its claim of sovereign immunity.

In other words, the Aquinnah can't even build a shed without complying with local regulations.

And then there's the drama of the Mashpee Wampanoag's land claim --

In the July 30 ruling issued by a three-member panel that included retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter, the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals supported the earlier ruling that the Binghams lack standing to bring suit on behalf of the tribe. The justices ruled that the Binghams were unable to show they suffered personal injury from the sale of land to non-Indians because they can't trace their own lineage back to specific land holders.

The Mashpee Wampanoags have an agreement with the Town of Mashpee that says, among other things, that they won't pursue their land claim that stalled property sales on the Cape.

Not one to give up, Mrs. Bingham went on to say --

"That's what we were telling the tribe all along," she said. "But tribe
leaders are too busy talking to Fall River when they should be talking about Mashpee."

In April 2008, the tribe and town reached a deal, approved separately by the tribal body and town meeting voters, that provided certain lands to the tribe, including the Old Indian Meeting House and burial ground, in exchange for the Mashpee Wampanoag waiving all future claims.
Meanwhile, the town agreed to support the tribe's efforts to put 140 acres in Mashpee in federal trust.

Amelia Bingham said she isn't likely to appeal the ruling. She said it's time for the tribe to assert its rights.

"We've opened the door part way. We have all the documents necessary," she said. "It's time for the so-called leaders of our tribe to take some action."

Mrs. Bingham, you're a very nice lady and you seem sincere in your intent. You were right about Glenn Marshall who is now in federal prison for making 'bribes' to gain Tribal recognition. If you violate the terms of the agreement with Mashpee, what will the already tarnished image of the Tribe be? Or doesn't it matter as long as you enrich yourself by exploiting others?

As if Carcieri v Salazar and the Hawaii v. Office of Hawaiian Affairs decisions weren't enough, here's another to consider --

Oneida Nation dispossessed of right to reclaim land or compensation

which includes (worth reading in its entirety) --
The appeals panel also said the state has sovereign immunity and cannot be sued.

“With this decision, the majority forecloses (the Oneida Nation) from
bringing any claims seeking any remedy for their treatment at the hands of the
state,” Gershon wrote.

...that tribal sovereignty is a waning concept, a
historical relic that has outlived its usefulness, and has little, if any, legal force.

Stay tuned for the next chapter.

Meanwhile, check out the current information on
United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts and add your name to the email list if you haven't done so already.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Parx: Child Abandonment Due to Gambling Addiction

Bensalem sees pattern: Parents in casino, children left in car
By Kristin E. Holmes

Five times this summer, Bensalem police have been called to investigate reports that unattended children were sitting in cars outside the Parx Casino while their parents gambled inside.

Sharon Balek, 35, of Philadelphia, is the latest case, police said.

Balek was charged Thursday with child endangerment for leaving her daughters, 8 and 15, in the parking lot Aug. 1 while she played the slot machines - for six hours.

The teenager - stuck with a nonworking cell phone - flagged down a passerby about 12:30 a.m. and borrowed a phone to call her father.

"We've had calls through the years with kids left in shopping centers, but what's making this hot is that we've had five in just a two-month period," said Fred Harran, public safety director in Bensalem. "The gambling addiction, the glitter of it all - people go in to gamble and forget the kids. I just don't get it."

Balek could not be reached for comment. She was charged after police reviewed her player's card record and footage from casino surveillance cameras.

That night, Balek told police that she lost track of time, Harran said. He called that a "ridiculous" excuse that is routine in such cases.

Two other parents have been charged this summer with leaving their children unattended at Parx, Harran said.

In June, Donald Waige, 59, of Philadelphia, was charged with leaving his 15-month-old son inside his running Nissan Altima while he went inside to gamble, according to police records. Waige was in the casino for over three hours, according to an affidavit.

Waige could not be reached for comment.

In July, police charged the parent of an 11-year-old who remained unattended in a parked car until 1 a.m., Harran said.

In the two remaining cases, no one was charged, Harran said. In one case, a 14-year-old watched over two toddlers for 30 minutes before the parent returned, Harran said. In the other, the family departed before police arrived, he said.

Carrie Nork-Minelli, a Parx spokeswoman, said she could not comment on the specific cases. The casino has a no-tolerance policy for such incidents, she said, and works closely with police when they occur.

For additional information:
Sheldon Adelson

For the most current information and to find out what you can do to oppose this in the Commonwealth, check:
United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts

Las Vegas: Revenues continue decline

Nevada Casino Gambling Revenues Dip 6.65% in June

By Dan Cypra - Aug 13th, 2010

In figures released by the Nevada Gaming Control Board this week, state casinos pulled in revenue, or “win,” of $763.8 million in June, a drop of 6.65% year over year. It marks the largest drop in revenue compared to the same month the year before since October 2009, when win fell 11.56%. Revenues statewide in Nevada topped $800 million in June 2009.

In Clark County, which includes the city of Las Vegas, revenues were $640.1 million in June, a slide of 6.91% from the same month a year earlier. Every single area within the county posted a loss year over year, including the famed Las Vegas Strip, whose gigantic casino resorts pulled in revenue of $382.9 million in June, a dip of 7.62% from the $414.5 million posted in June 2010. The Strip plays host to a bevy of poker tournaments held in casinos like the Bellagio, Venetian, and Caesars Palace.

In Downtown Las Vegas, where shows like “Face the Ace” and “High Stakes Poker” are taped at the Golden Nugget, revenues of $40.2 million represented an 11.67% fall year over year, the second largest decline of any area in Nevada. In North Las Vegas, revenues were off 7.98% year over year to $23.4 million. Out in Laughlin, which also sits in Clark County, casino win was down nearly 5% to $36.6 million, while on the Boulder Strip, revenues of $62.0 million represented an 8.85% slide year over year.

Washoe County was hard hit in June. The scorching summer heat failed to send would-be gamblers to air conditioned casinos, as the county’s gambling revenues slid 9.17% to $63.5 million. In Reno, “The Biggest Little City in the World,” gambling win dove 8.32% year over year in June to $47.1 million. Nearby Sparks reported the largest decline two months ago of any area in Nevada at 13.23%, as its revenues of $9.4 million fell well short of last year’s tally of $10.8 million.

South Lake Tahoe casinos owners were dancing a jig in June, as area gambling establishments posted a 13.52% gain in win year over year to $19.8 million. Over the fiscal year to date, however, revenues in South Lake Tahoe are still down nearly 17% to $219.7 million. In North Lake Tahoe, casino revenue sank 10.58% in June to $2.2 million.

In Elko County, which includes the city of Wendover, casino revenues were off 10.11% to $19.8 million. In Wendover, which accounts for the bulk of the revenue the county pulls in, win slipped by 9.72% to $12.1 million. Finally, the Carson Valley Area was the second jurisdiction to post a gain year over year, as its $8.6 million in casino win marked a rise of 5.15%.

The State of Nevada pulled in $42.9 million in fees from its licensed casinos in July based on revenues recorded in June. The figure represented a 5.94% drop from the previous year, or $2.7 million in real money.

Check out the full Nevada Gaming Control Board revenue report.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Government Addiction to Gambling Revenue? Follow the money!

This certainly raises enough issues about Government Sponsored Gambling Addiction and the lack of controls that should warrant consideration.

A few Massachusetts elected/appointed officials have promoted the wondrous success of Canadian Gambling. Maybe they haven't asked the pertinent questions.

Explain BC Liberals addiction to gambling? Simple - follow the money! And the lobbyists!
Why BC Liberals love gambling

Watch the big money -- and the big players.
By Bill Tieleman

"A B.C. Liberal government will stop the expansion of gambling that has increased gambling addiction and put new strains on families."

- B.C. Liberals New Era promise, 2001

Hope you didn't bet on that one!

But why has the B.C. Liberal Party done a complete 180-degree turn from strongly fighting gambling when in opposition to presiding over a massive expansion of gaming?

Why did the B.C. Lottery Corporation introduce its addictive online gambling site -- which immediately crashed -- in the same week we learn it was fined $670,000 by federal financial regulators for 1,020 violations of the Proceeds of Crime and Terrorist Financing Act on casino transactions over $10,000?

And why won't minister responsible Rich Coleman fire Michael Graydon, the $383,000 a year CEO of the B.C. Lottery Corporation?

Simple -- follow the money. And the lobbyists.

This government has a gambling addiction second to none -- it cannot stay away from the blackjack tables and slot machines because it desperately needs the money just to pay off its bad debts -- B.C.'s massive $1.8 billion deficit.

Preach abstinence, bet the house?

When it comes to gambling, Premier Gordon Campbell neither knows his limit nor plays within it -- he needs to apply for "problem gambler" status so he'll be banned at the casino doors.

Campbell preached like an evangelical revival-tent pastor against gambling when the New Democratic Party was in office -- praying for an end to this scourge on humanity.

But once in power, Campbell became a sinner, expanding all forms of gambling in order to increase net government revenue by 265 per cent -- from $414 million in 2001 to more than $1.1 billion today.

Meanwhile, who is the top lobbyist for Great Canadian Gaming Corporation, the large gambling company that runs several B.C. casinos and horseracing tracks as well as other operations across the country?

Who is the lobbyist with an undertaking from Great Canadian that started in August 2005 and continues through until April 2013?

Why it's Patrick Kinsella, the B.C. Liberal Party's former election campaign chair and co-chair in the 2001 and 2005 provincial votes, the most influential backroom guy in the business and a man who has donated more than $77,000 either through his Progressive Holdings or Progressive Strategies businesses to the party since 2005.

Casino makes things 'cosier'

Kinsella -- also a well-known horse owner with entries running at Hastings Racecourse nearly every weekend -- summarizes his business on the B.C. Lobbyists registry as: "Casino operations in partnership with B.C. Lotteries Corporation."

Just to keep things even cosier with the provincial government, who did Great Canadian hire in May to become senior vice-president of operations?

Why Vic Poleschuk -- the former CEO of the B.C. Lottery Corporation, who was terminated with $603,000 severance after a report from B.C. Ombudsman Kim Carter found a "lack of scrutiny for the 99 per cent of the winning [lottery] tickets and 80 per cent of the prize money paid out for wins under $10,000."

And who did Public Eye Online discover was scheduled to meet Poleschuck repeatedly in 2006 and 2007? Yes, lobbyist Patrick Kinsella.

'Whacked' by money-laundering guardian

The only bad bet the B.C. Liberals made was to wager against the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada, the federal regulator that guards against money laundering.

And the B.C. Lottery Corporation lost badly. It was fined $670,000 for violating the reporting rules 1,020 times -- but kept it secret until CKNW's Brett Mineer got the scoop.

It turns out the B.C. Lottery Corporation was also the only provincial gambling authority to be whacked by FINTRAC.

While Graydon calls them "administrative" breaches, FINTRAC wasn't impressed.

FINTRAC says 20 per cent of all money-laundering and terrorist-financing cases in Canada in 2008-2009 involved casinos, where criminals and bad guys pay cash to buy chips and then cash in for a legitimate casino cheque after minimal play.

You can see just how seriously the B.C. Lottery Corporation felt about the need to prevent money laundering here -- because last year it increased the maximum weekly online gambling limit from $120 to a massive $9,999 -- just one dollar short of FINTRAC's reportable minimum $10,000.

PlayNow adds to losing streak

Then there's the fiasco -- the new online gambling site B.C. Lottery Corporation aimed at making $100 million a year from that crashed shortly after it was launched.

The B.C. Lottery Corporation initially claimed it was overloaded with so many happy gamblers that the system couldn't handle it -- but five full days later the truth came out. suffered 134 "data crossovers" that meant players could see other players' personal financial data online -- and even make bets with their money.

All in all, a disastrous record for the luckless B.C. Liberals.

And let's be clear -- I'm not opposed to gambling.

I've even bet and won money placing wagers on Kinsella's own horses at Hastings Racecourse, while subsidizing government revenues through buying lottery tickets.

But I am opposed to rank hypocrisy and gross incompetence, something that is always a sure bet with this government.

For the most current information and to find out what you can do to oppose this in Massachusetts, check:
United to Stop Slots in Massachusetts

Thursday, August 12, 2010

We can't fight casino money laundering

We can't fight casino money laundering: RCMP report

Staff shortages mean suspicious transactions aren't investigated
By Chad Skelton, Vancouver Sun August 12, 2010

Money laundering by organized crime groups is rampant at Canadian casinos but police are essentially doing nothing to combat it, according to an internal RCMP report obtained by The Vancouver Sun.

"Since 2003, FINTRAC [the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada] has sent several disclosure reports to the RCMP on suspicious transactions involving casinos throughout Canada, with amounts totalling over $40 million," the 2009 report states.

"Anecdotally, police managers have suggested that, because of other priorities and a lack of resources, at this time, nothing is being done to investigate these situations."

Sgt. Dave Gray, of the B.C. RCMP's Integrated Proceeds of Crime unit, said in an interview Wednesday that not a single person has been charged with money laundering at B.C.'s casinos in recent memory.

"If we had more resources, then we could perhaps set broader priorities or conduct more investigations," he said. "That goes without saying. We could definitely use more resources."

However, Gray said the lack of casino-related charges is also due to police focusing on more "target-rich" areas -- such as currency seizures at the border -- where it is easier to prove criminal intent.

The internal RCMP report, obtained by The Sun through the Access to Information Act, states "organized crime is prevalent in casinos at several levels."

Those include money laundering and loan sharking, and that casinos provide several opportunities for criminals to make cash earned illegally appear legitimate.

For example, criminals have been known to approach people after a big win and offer to buy their casino cheque for 105 per cent of its face value.

The internal RCMP report notes many casinos now have self-serve kiosks where patrons can exchange winning tickets for cash, allowing launderers to operate without having to deal with a human cashier.

The report states that with little police enforcement, casino security is left to deal with the problem, something it is not equipped to do.

"Casinos do not have the necessary resources to determine whether ticket amounts represent legitimate winnings," the report states.

By law, casinos are required to report to FINTRAC all transactions over $10,000.

Last month, the B.C. Lottery Corp. was fined $670,000 by FINTRAC for problems with more than 1,000 of those reports, from delays in filing them to not recording enough information about who made the transactions.

FINTRAC has confirmed BCLC is the only provincial gambling corporation in the country to receive such a fine.

BCLC president Michael Graydon said at the time the corporation had fixed its reporting problems and was now in compliance with FINTRAC rules.

The report obtained by The Sun was prepared on Jan. 29, 2009, by B.C.'s Integrated Illegal Gaming Enforcement Team, which was responsible for policing illegal gambling such as bookmaking.

The 12-member team was disbanded by Housing Minister Rich Coleman on April 1, 2009.

At the time, Coleman said the team, which cost $1 million a year, wasn't cost-effective.

When news of BCLC's FINTRAC violations broke last month, Coleman said he didn't think organized crime was a big problem in B.C.'s casinos.

"[I've] not had at any time contacts from our people in the enforcement side saying there is a specifically high ratio of issues around organized crime in B.C.'s gaming sector," he said.

Coleman was not available for comment Wednesday.

© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun


Did you ever notice that the Gambling Vultures promote the GREAT success of the Mystic Seaport as proof of the success of the CT Slot Parlors?

Of course, they can't produce a study because staff has been slashed and the numbers? Well.....they're kinda....sorta...vague.

So no one can really provide hard numbers, real facts to justify anything...well, other than the detrimental effects of slot parlors, increased crime, increased DUIs.

Mystic Seaport Lays Off 18 Employees
Museum's President Cites Declining Endowment

Mystic Seaport laid off 11 percent of its staff this week, officials said, as part of an effort by the museum to find savings and efficiencies of about $1.5 million.

The 18 full-time employees were notified Monday that they had been laid off. Museum President Stephen White held a meeting Tuesday morning with the remaining staff of about 145. White said that with the endowment down 37 percent from last year, staff members were aware that he and the museum's board were looking for ways to cut costs and increase revenue.

White became museum president in January and spent the next months preparing a budget for the new fiscal year, which begins May 1.

The Echoes Inside Their Heads

Concealing ignorance in Executive Sessions may be a violation of Open Meeting Laws, but the Middleboro Board of Selectmen has never allowed that to stop them.

The Chairwoman, not the brightest bulb in the circuit and mostly content to wallow in her own ignorance, never one to question, has her own agenda that doesn't include accurate information or public discussion.

Does anyone remember when Selectwoman Marsha Brunelle wanted Town Counsel to negotiate the agreement with the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe to save money? Surely town counsel has negotiated many Tribal Agreements and is fully familiar with IGRA, IRA, pertinent landmark court decisions and such! [insert sarcasm emoticon]

Does anyone remember when Marsha Brunelle and Wayne Perkins refused to allow a public discussion of Jack Healey's land auction that was advertised ONLY in Middleboro's weekly newspaper that cheated taxpayers out of a fair and reasonable price for the proposed 'casino property' ? Remember, those were the parcels Jack Healey, former Town Manager was seen poring over Assessors' Maps with Stephen Graham selecting? Sorry, Jack! Remember that day when I forgot my coffee mug and the doors to the Selectmen's Meeting Room were closed? And there were other times, as well.

There's much else in the convoluted history of the secret deals and misinformation of the BOS that seems unending.

Fortunately, their current ignorance seems harmless, but provides fodder for amusement and helps define their willingness to pursue Mushroom Farming, a thriving industry in Middleboro's Town Hall. (You know? Kept in the dark and fed a diet of manure?)

It was embarrassing that the Middleboro BOS sent a letter to the BIA, mostly staffed with Native Americans and known for its corruption, advising that the Tribe is not to be trusted. Chicanery? Paallleeeaze! Wasn't anyone in Town Hall paying attention to Abramoff?

I sure hope they sent that letter with Delivery Confirmation because the BIA has an obnoxious habit of losing things. Deliberate? One might wonder.

Now they believe Cedric Cromwell's Day Dream that he has magically submitted some kind of application to the BIA for LIT for their Fall River Fiasco.

Has anyone asked Cedric why the application has NOT appeared in the Federal Register? When was it submitted?

When the BIA officially accepts a trust land application, it's posted in the Federal Register.

No post in the Federal Register.

If they are adding the Fall River land, they have to post an intent to conduct an EIS at that site. Haven't seen that yet either.

It would appear there is no pending request for permission to game on that land with the only agency authorized to give Cedric permission to game.

This is classic Cedric --

In a prepared statement to The Enterprise, Cromwell, the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Council chairman, said the tribe “would like to work with (the town) to find a mutually beneficial use for the land.”

Oh? You mean the land the TRIBE does NOT own?

Thanks for your assistance, Cedric! [insert laughter track here]

I hate re-runs!

Email Web Sites
Being played for fools?
Marsha, Marsha, Marsha!


Hang it up, Stan!

Not content to accept quiet and polite corrections, Senator Stanley Rosenberg continues to wave the wrong banner to promote his personal agenda and circulate information he is fully aware is incorrect.

Several recent articles contain a great deal of misinformation emanating from the Senator regarding an extremely complex issue that surely my friend, Gladys or my friend, Carver Chick can elaborate.

Native American Tribes cannot magically place land into trust.

Two Supreme Court decisions have currently rendered that concept meaningless --

Carcieri v Salazar and the Hawaii decision -

My friends, Gladys --

and Carver Chick --

have factually debunked this propaganda.

The simplest solution? No SLOTS = No Tribal Casino.

The Mashpee Wampanoags have submitted an application that included Mashpee and Middleboro (to which they have no historic ties). That application is flawed for numerous reasons. The Tribe does NOT own the land in Middleboro.

They have NOT submitted an application that includes Fall River. If the Mashpee Wampanoags had no ties to Middleboro, their ties to Fall River?

Prior to the 2 SCOTUS decisions, LIT would take 5 - 7 years(barring payoffs a la Abramoff).

Then the management agreement MUST be approved or this is the risk:

Tribe Renegs on $50 Million Bond

The time frame for that approval is 5-7 years (again barring payoffs a la Abramoff).

Mr. Cromwell threatened to erect a casino and not pay the state a dime. Has he done so? No because the Tribe has NO LIT and the Tribe ONLY owns land in Mashpee.

The Tribe has an agreement with the Town of Mashpee that stipulated: Mashpee would not oppose their LIT application if:

1. they would not resurrect their land claims;
2. they would not erect a gaming facility in Mashpee

Opposition to SLOT BARNS should not be determined by Cedric Cromwell's misinformation regarding IGRA, nor Senator Rosenberg's calculated statements.

I hope I have simply explained a complex issue.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

To the "YES" votes --

There can be no justification in supporting/promoting
SLOT BARNS* in the Commonwealth, beyond the
desire for power, campaign contributions or future
promises. As such, I would hope you would re-consider
your vote.

( *For $600 million, you get a SLOT BARN, not something
euphemistically labeled or future promises.)

1. Re-capture of revenue across state lines is a specious
argument, created by Gambling Vultures.

Were the Commonwealth truly concerned about $$ flooding
across the border, Beacon Hill would address: 1. air travelers
taking off from T.F.Green or Bradley; 2. Massachusetts
residents flocking to New Hampshire to avoid the sales
tax, liquor tax and cigarette tax.

2. Economic development

From "Cha Ching" Murray: SLOTS suck $$$ from economy

Murray, meanwhile, told the Cape Cod Times over the weekend that she believed
slot machines "suck all the economic environment from within 20 miles, and
really don't get any jobs from it."

3. Tourism

From CT: No Economic Development, No Tourism

Ledyard borders the Pequot reservation that's home to the world's biggest
casino, Foxwoods Resort.

"There has been no economic development
spin-off from the casino. Businesses do not come here," [Mayor Wesley Johnson of
Ledyard, Conn] Johnson said. "Tourists come mainly to gamble. Gamblers have one
thing in mind: get to the casino, win or lose their money, get in their cars,
and go home."

4. Job creation

From What’s the big hurry? :

The three states with the highest unemployment rates in the nation are Michigan,
Nevada, and Rhode Island, all home to casinos or racinos. With decreased
earnings, fewer gamblers, and limited casino borrowing, layoffs are hitting
their casinos.

The number of jobs the proposed legislation would create
has been wildly exaggerated. We are told that two casinos and four racinos will
net about 16,000 construction and permanent jobs. But in Indiana it takes 10
riverboats, one casino and two racinos to generate 16,000 current jobs and
Louisiana requires 18 casinos to employ 17,268, according to the American Gaming

The states that most closely mirror the current legislation
suggest that the real results will be but a fraction of the job estimates we
have been hearing. Michigan’s three casinos net 8,568 permanent jobs and New
Mexico’s five racinos employ less than 2,000 people.

5. Gambling Addiction

From: Gambling Addict Costs $13,000 A Year:

“Each compulsive gambler costs society approximately $13,000 each year and will
impact the lives of at least seven other people,” he said.

6. Revenues

As Scott Harshbarger wrote:

In Las Vegas, it takes 266 casinos to bring in $11.6 billion in gross revenue,
which translates into $924 million in tax revenue. Even the $300 million to
million now estimated here is a stretch based on that data.

7. Indian Gaming

This is a complex issue, explored in depth elsewhere.

Carcieri v Salazar and Hawaii v Office of Hawaiian Affairs
eliminated any potential threat to the Commonwealth.

Simply put:
Casino Proponents Misleading Public

Citing repeated claims by lead Senate gambling bill conferee Sen. Stanley
Rosenberg, casino opponents on Tuesday said there as no possibility of tribal
casinos in Massachusetts unless the Legislature and Gov. Deval Patrick agree to
legalize slot parlors and casinos.

SCOTUS and Hawaii Being Ignored

Within weeks of the 8-1 Carcieri v Salazar decision, a second
strike on fee
to trust was issued. This time it came from a case
originating in the state
of Hawaii. In the 9-0 decision on Hawaii
v. the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.
Justice Alito wrote, "It would
raise grave constitutional concerns" Congress
sought to "cloud
Hawaii's title to its sovereign lands" after it had joined
Union. "We have emphasized that Congress cannot, after
reserve or convey....lands that have already been
bestowed upon a state".
How many readers of this paper could
be effected by issues concerning land
that has been "bestowed
upon a state"; as an original colony, through
territory or when the territory entered into statehood?

8. Lottery

From: Exploding Myths: Lottery

The state lottery of Massachusetts
brings in more revenue than
Las Vegas's 266 casinos.

If it takes a 10% hit -- which is a fairly
conservative number -- it will be very difficult
for the state to bring in enough slot tax revenue
to offset the 100 million we'd lose to the
state lottery.

Note: The Spectrum Gaming Report projected LOTTERY
REVENUE loses of $144 MILLION.


From Crime in Atlantic City

...expecting to see a “clean and safe” Atlantic City
by July 1, 2011. Many casino executives and city officials have argued that
safety concerns are merely based on inaccurate perceptions, which the governor
alluded to during his visit to Atlantic City this week.

But the McKinsey
report refers to it as fact, citing statistics that show the city’s violent
crime rate in 2009 far exceeded the national average and trumps other cities
such as Trenton and Biloxi, Miss, according to federal
statisitics [sic].

From Race to the bottom....

His research compared crime at Las Vegas to that at high-tourist destinations
not associated with gambling – Branson, Mo.; and the Mall of America in
Bloomington, Minn.
Las Vegas’ crime rate is 1,040 percent higher than Branson’s and 15.7 times
higher than Bloomington’s, Grinols reported, although both destinations draw far
more visitors per resident than does Las Vegas.
A similar pattern is found
when comparing crime rates at large tourist destinations in the National Park
System to Las Vegas.


This is the ugly face of SLOT BARNS:


Although I have no expectation that you will read or digest this information,
at least I've made my attempt to enlighten.


Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Mask Slips

The Gambling Vultures circling Beacon Hill would pretend that their costs don't include the ultimate cost:


Gambling Addiction has the lowest rate of self-referral and the highest rate of SUICIDE.

They leave behind grieving families, orphaned children who grow up without a parent, friends sometimes betrayed, tattered lives torn asunder to enrich the already wealthy.

They silence the media, monopolize the conversation and repeat their false mantra hoping you won't notice:


You won't find the TRUTH printed in your local paper that has clearly been put on notice to print NOTHING negative about this phony scheme.

Every once in awhile, the sexy mask slips, you catch a glimpse of a sleazy business that simply doesn't want you to know what it's about, a business in which the foundations of Democracy are extinguished, the lesser among us are exploited and sensible public policy sacrificed to surrender control in the ultimate "Something for Nothing" scheme.

Shortly after Three Rivers opened, local media reported the “first suicide at the Florence casino.”

On the morning of Feb. 29, 2008, Steven L. Martin, 58, of Westlake, died of self-inflicted gunshot wounds in the parking lot in front of Three Rivers Casino along Highway 126 in Florence.

Although casino marketing quickly moved to hush this suicide and other crimes of pain associated with those who’ve also lost their shirt at Three Rivers, “a chill moved through Florence as if it was saying we screwed-up and sold our beloved Florence for a parking lot full of grief and service oriented gambling jobs,” said Mavis Walters of Florence.

“They no longer keep track of the suicides associated with gambling losses, but look at this economy and no jobs and yet the casino here is full with those who want to hit the big one. Nobody really hits the big one, and if they do it's one in hundreds of thousands. It’s all very sad to see a tourist community held hostage to gambling. But that’s the case with more than 200 jobs at Three Rivers. Many of my senior friends loosing much too much on slots,” explained Walters with a sense of chagrin.

What's the "deal" with Three Rivers Casino, say Eugene gamblers who've lost big bucks in Florence

EUGENE, Oregon – With one eye on the population of Eugene and the valley and the other on the need to market more during this terrible recession, Three Rivers Casino wants to be the go to casino for Lane County.

“Wherever you go in town – from the beltline and up or down Coburg Road – there’s these $7.77 buffet posters and other signs telling us Three Rivers is the place for a girl’s night out or whatever. I lost my shirt at that casino and there’s nothing fun about it,” said Eugene native Craig Brightman.

In fact, Brightman points to a recent “60 Minutes” interview with the legendary casino owner Steve Wynn who is credited with spearheading the resurgence and expansion of casino gambling in Las Vegas.

“I’ll never forget hearing Wynn – one of the most connected casino bosses in history – saying on 60 Minutes that ‘nobody really wins at casino gambling other than the owners. You’re a fool to think you can win at slots or other casino gambling,’ said Wynn, and he should know,” explained Brightman who noted he dropped “several grand at Three Rivers Casino.”

Unlike Nevada, where one has to travel far to get to Las Vegas or Reno for casino action, Three Rivers is right off Highway 126 outside of Florence on the central Oregon coast.

Another difference between Vegas/Reno and Three Rivers is there are no laws in Oregon about the minimum amount a slot machine must pay. Also, Oregon’s Native American-run casinos can change the odds while the customer is playing.

In other words, tribe-run casinos are different than mainstream casinos in Vegas and other places.

Back in my former hometown of Atlantic City, New Jersey, for example, there is a set requirement to pay back a certain amount to the gambler. But in Oregon, casinos are free to choose which player wins, and how much they win.

“That’s why they call it gaming in Oregon, and not gambling. They can control the slots and other games a lot more than say Las Vegas for Atlantic City,” explained Brightman who recently completed a state-sponsored gambling anonymous program.

The Three Rivers Casino in Florence has it beginnings back in 1994 when the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw wanted to secure a parcel of land near the confederated tribe headquarters in Coos Bay. That plan changed because of the opening of another tribe casino in North Bend called the “Mill Casino” that also caters to Eugene area gamblers.

Flash forward to the 2006, and there appeared a temporary 10,000 square foot tent version of the Three Rivers Casino. The current Three Rivers Casino opened on Jan. 22, 2008, with 650 slot machines and an expanded “games” area with blackjack, craps, roulette and live poker.

Shortly after Three Rivers opened, local media reported the “first suicide at the Florence casino.”

On the morning of Feb. 29, 2008, Steven L. Martin, 58, of Westlake, died of self-inflicted gunshot wounds in the parking lot in front of Three Rivers Casino along Highway 126 in Florence.

Although casino marketing quickly moved to hush this suicide and other crimes of pain associated with those who’ve also lost their shirt at Three Rivers, “a chill moved through Florence as if it was saying we screwed-up and sold our beloved Florence for a parking lot full of grief and service oriented gambling jobs,” said Mavis Walters of Florence.

“They no longer keep track of the suicides associated with gambling losses, but look at this economy and no jobs and yet the casino here is full with those who want to hit the big one. Nobody really hits the big one, and if they do it's one in hundreds of thousands. It’s all very sad to see a tourist community held hostage to gambling. But that’s the case with more than 200 jobs at Three Rivers. Many of my senior friends loosing much too much on slots,” explained Walters with a sense of chagrin.

Sadly, this year marks the fifth anniversary of the passing of James Lott Sr., who served as the chief of the Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians. Lott was elected to this ceremonial position in 2000.

I remember working with Chief Lott on several cultural projects associated with the tribe's long history.

Chief Lott believed strongly in keeping his tribes culture relevant, and he hoped the plan for Three Rivers Casino would further his dream of having a confederated tribal cultural center for the 800-member tribe that historically occupied land between the Siuslaw and Umpqua rivers from the coast to Eugene.

While there’s a nice photo of Chief Lott in his ceremonial chief headdress near the cashier’s cage at Three Rivers Casino, there’s no cultural center or anything other than slots, bars and dining rooms at this casino that caters to Eugene and other local clientele.

Chief Lott once quoted the late runner Steve Prefontaine when discussing his “dream” for the Three Rivers Casino Cultural Center.

“To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift,” said Prefontaine in this quote that Chief Lott appreciated.

So it goes.