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Gambling With Nature
A stone’s throw from Oakland International
Airport, golden eagles can be spotted circling the sky and sandpipers
seen probing the soft mud of Arrowhead Marsh with their slender beaks.
Despite the roar of jets and drone of Nimitz traffic, the birds and
critters that flock to the 50-acre marsh and an adjoining 72 acres of
restored tidal and seasonal wetlands are thriving, conservationists say.
But they worry that won’t last if a 24-hour, 2,000-slot casino moves
in next door.
The Lower Lake Rancheria Koi Nation Indian tribe wants to build the
casino and a seven-story hotel/spa complex on a 35-acre parking lot
abutting the restored marshland.
Tribal elders say every precaution will be taken to ensure the
development does not hurt the marsh and its feathered inhabitants.
Daniel Beltran, chairman of the Koi Nation, said a pending
environmental study for the casino will be the most stringent ever
considered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
Also, he noted, there will be a bufferzone between the buildings and
the marsh, and the lighting will be more modern and less intrusive than
what is there now.
But environmentalists who have sued to stop the Port of Oakland and
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from developing some of the last remaining
wetlands in San Leandro Bay say while they don’t oppose casinos per se,
the project shouldn’t abut such a sensitive area.
entire article at:
The Daily Review
2004 Online Casino News Archive