The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indian Tribe will have their grand opening on August 2, 2007 for their Four Winds Casino Resort in New Buffalo Township. The contractors of the casino are hard at work trying to finish the casino for the opening date.
The Christman Co. from Lansing started working on the gambling casino a year ago in collaboration with national builder, Kraus and Anderson.
The management company of the casino, Lakes Entertainment Inc from Minneapolis, Minnesota received a total of 12,000 job applications as of June 12, 2007, according to Four Winds Casino Resort General Manager, Matt Harkness.
Harkness said that they have already hired 300 people and are in the process of hiring the next 2,200 employees needed by the casino.
He further stated that they already held a job fair on June 8, 2007. About 550 people attended the event and they hired 150 employees on the spot.
The construction marks the end of over 10 years of opposition in the state and federal courts by the Taxpayers of Michigan Against Casinos, an organization that opposes the casino plans but never revealed their member count.
The group's financing was traced with the use of a subpoena to the former owner of the Blue Chip Casino in Michigan City, Ind., which is just 10 miles from the New Buffalo site casino.
Both the Gun Lake Tribe of Pottawatomi Indians from Dorr, which is south of Grand Rapids and the Nottawaseppi Huron Band from south of Battle Creek, see the good fortune of the Pokagon Band as breaking the boundaries for their own casinos.
This is because the lawsuit that has been filed against them by the Warner, Norcross and Judd for Michigan Gambling Opposition and Citizens Exposing Truth Against Casinos were almost identical to the lawsuit filed against the Pokagon Band of Indians.
Nottawaseppi Huron spokeswoman, Donna Halinski, said that they are confident enough that they could win the case against their critics. The problems of the 2 tribes are whether the Emmett Township, the place which the Nottawaseppi Tribe wants to build their casino, is part of the tribe's reservation land.
The oral arguments in the case were already heard in May 2007. While the tribe awaits the ruling on the case, they are already finishing their plans for a groundbreaking event late this summer. The 3 tribes said that the casino would not only help them financially, but the state's economy as well.
07/30/2007 23:19 PM