From: email@example.com Subject: Mon. Mar. 6th Hearing In Zion for Ill. and Wis. - Stop Kenosha Casino Land Rights Network American Land Rights Association Alliance Against Reservation Shopping PO Box 400 - Battle Ground, WA 98604 Phone: 360-687-3087 - FAX: 360-687-2973 firstname.lastname@example.org Web Address: http://www.landrights.org Legislative Office: 507 Seward Square SE - Washington, DC 20003 Mon. Mar. 6th Hearing In Zion for Ill. and Wis.--Stop Kenosha Casino Stop Casino Reservation Shopping In Illinois and Wisconsin Hearing Monday March 6th In Zion, Illinois – Menominee Kenosha Casino The Comment deadline is Monday, March 6th. Monday, March 6th at 7:00 PM Zion-Benton Township High School, One Z-B Way, 21st Street and Kenosha Road, Zion, IL 60099 Use the Easy Comment Questionnaire set up for you below. You can testify be e-mail or fax – We have provided you with a convenient Comment Questionnaire below you can fill out and FAX to the BIA at (612) 713-4401 or send it to American Land Rights at email@example.com. We’ll forward it on to the Bureau of Indian Affairs no matter whether you agree with us or not. Be sure to go to the end of the e-mail to find your Comment Questionnaire. You can also print out a formatted version of the Comment Questionnaire by going to www.landrights.org It is right on the home page. Action Items: -----1. Make plans to attend the hearing in Zion, Illinois on Monday, March 6th. Call (217) 782-8151. -----2. Fill out your Comment Questionnaire and FAX it back to the Bureau of Indian Affairs or American Land Rights. The fax number is (612) 713-4401. Your you can e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll fax it to BIA. Their e-mail is not working. If you send it to us, we will forward it on to the BIA. -----3. Call your friends to urge them to attend the public hearing Monday, March 6th a 7:00 PM in Zion, Il. It’s a big deal! -----4. Call your Congressman at (202) 225-3121 to urge him to oppose this massive new casino. Ask for his fax number so you can fax him a copy of your comments. Ask your Congressman to request that the BIA attend. Thank you, March, 2006 Chuck Cushman Executive Director, American Land Rights Association PS. American Land Rights wants to help you defeat the Menominee and Mohegan Tribal MEGA Casino in Kenosha. Please attend the Public Hearing March 6, 2006. “Reservation shopping” has got to stop. Thank you for your help. Dear Wisconsin and Illinois Friend: The hearing has been organized by State Rep. Jo Ann Osmond, 61st Dist. Of Illinois (R-Antioch and Zion Mayor Lane Harrison. Other elected officials in the area are getting involved. You may contact Rep. Osmond at (217) 782-8151. A massive new Mega-Casino is planned by the Menominee and Mohegan Tribes In Kenosha, Wisconsin. The Bureau of Indian Affairs has published a Draft Environmental Impact Statement about the Casino. The Deadline for public comments is Monday, March 6th. Come to Zion, Illinois and tell the BIA and the U.S. Government whether or not you think there should be more off-reservation gambling and more private land turned into Indian Reservations. A recent poll in Wisconsin suggested that over two-thirds of the citizens think enough is enough. That off-reservation gaming must be brought to a halt. The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) has released a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Menominee Kenosha Casino, which is 6 miles from the Lake County border. This massive $808 million 3,200 position casino sits on 223 acres and will include not only a casino but the existing Dairyland Dog Track and a hotel resort complex. The EIS is how the Bureau of Indian Affairs (part of the Department of Interior) determines whether to take this land into trust for gaming purposes. A major issue is whether the BIA will allow what is now private land that pays taxes to be taken into trust ultimately establishing a Menominee Reservation in the middle of the city. The Bureau of Indian Affairs appears to be biased when dealing with pending applications for fee to trust status and for reservation status. Another major issue is whether the Federal government should allow Indian Tribes to place casinos anywhere they want, even far from their reservation. The Menominee Reservation is 200 miles from Kenosha. This is what we call reservation shopping. The new definition of sacred Indian lands is, “does it have a freeway with an off-ramp close to a population center. “ There is no place in the process for local citizens or governments to be officially recognized or have a say in their own future. At present, the Governor of a state is the only elected official with the ability to say no. Congress must change the law to give local government the power to control their future. In the meantime, this EIS is the only place you get to officially get your comments in. Based on the public comments on the study and the study itself, Terry Virden, Regional Director of the BIA recommends or does not recommend taking this land into trust for gaming to the Secretary of Interior. Acting on his decision, the Secretary then formally takes the land into trust or refuses to do so if there is a reason to do so. Based on past practice, the Secretary of Interior usually follows the Regional Director’s recommendation. This proposal is similar to the one made in 2000, which stirred a substantial amount of opposition. ATTENTION: Don’t miss the public hearing about the EIS statement and the mega-casino proposal to be held at 7 PM, Monday, March 6th at the Zion-Benton Township High School, One Z-B Way, 21st Street and Kenosha Road, Zion, IL 60099 Call your friends and tell them about the hearing. BIA must hear from you. Below are some reasons we urge you to strongly oppose the proposed Kenosha Mega-Casino, both in writing and by attending the planned public hearing., 1. A giant $808 million Kenosha mega-casino will drain business away from various entertainment venues including hotels, restaurants, and special entertainment attractions such as shopping centers all over Wisconsin and Illinois. 2. A Kenosha Casino will increase the number of problem gamblers and will likely not provide anywhere enough revenues to local governments to address their increased social needs. Some (Over, please) communities along the Lake have a much larger population than Kenosha County and will feel the greatest social impacts yet will receive no funds or have any say how this casino is run. 3. The Menominee and Mohegan Tribes are engaging in “reservation shopping.” “Reservation shopping” is where an Indian Tribe looks for a new Casino site based on their new definition of “sacred ground.” That is, where there is a freeway off-ramp close to a population center. This is often across state lines or even within a state where the Tribe has virtually no aboriginal history. “Reservation shopping” is being examined closely now by the Congress. The Senate and House are in the process of holding hearings on “reservation shopping” with legislation expected shortly. 4. A Kenosha Casino will increase vehicle traffic in the entire area up and down the lake,, worsening air pollution and causing more problems for citizens trying to shop and get to work. Congestion will be particularly bad on two major routes, U.S. 41 and the Illinois Tollway. 5. The recently revised checklist the BIA uses for conducting evaluations of whether there is a detrimental impact to surrounding communities includes all local communities within a 10 mile radius. Yet, for example, Lake County, Illinois is only 6 miles from the proposed site. The EIS prepared by the Menominee ignores the impact of the proposal on Lake County and other affected areas. Why is the BIA choosing to ignore its own policy in the preparation of this EIS? 6. Since the Federal government created this Casino boondoggle by passing the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act in 1988, Congress needs to step forward and help solve the problem. 7. No Casino should be allowed on land that was private fee land and converted into Federal Indian Trust Land without a vote of the people within jurisdictions within a 10-mile radius. Local communities need to have a say in their future. 8. Many believe there should be at least a three-year moratorium on new Tribal gaming casinos to allow Congress to recognize the negative results of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) and update this act to properly regulate a business that has grown to nearly $20 billion per year. 9. Congress should close current exceptions and loopholes whereby some tribes are allowed to impose casinos on local communities who don’t want them. Even landless tribes and tribes with no reservation should not be allowed to overpower the will of local communities. Public comments can be sent to: Terrance Virden, Regional Director BIA, BIA, Bishop Henry Whipple Federal Building, 1 Federal Drive, Room 550, Fort Snelling, Minnesota, 55111. Comments will be accepted until November 21, 2005. The EIS and other information are available on the casino’s website, kenoshacasino.com. You can call for more information at (612) 725-4510. You can fax a request for a copy of the EIS to (612) 713-4401. You can fax comments to that number as well. American Land Rights is a non-profit grassroots association that protects landowners and unique populations across America. ALRA helped save the Osage Tribe from the Park Service in 1986. ALRA, started in 1978, has associated groups and allies in every state. Just mailing the post card is a big step toward defeating this proposal and will allow you to stay informed as the casino is considered. Homeowners, families, church leaders, non-profits, business owners and others must join together to stop this spread of “reservation shopping.” Please don’t fail to do your part by mailing your post card today. Make sure you give the second post card to a friend or business associate. ****************************** Official Comment Questionnaire Mail, Fax and E-mail Deadline Monday, March 6th Official Comment Period – Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) — Menominee Indian Kenosha Casino Dear Wisconsin or Illinois Resident: URGENT ACTION REQUIRED!! You are facing what we believe is a significant threat to your area. The Menominee Indian Tribe has joined the Mohegan Tribe of Connecticut and is engaging in reservation shopping in Kenosha. That is, acquiring private land outside their indigenous boundary, taking it off the tax rolls and converting it into an Indian Reservation for the purpose of building a huge gambling casino. This massive $808 million 3,200 position casino sits on 223 acres along with the existing Dairyland Dog Track and a hotel resort complex. By returning this questionnaire, you can make sure you get your concerns in the official legal record. The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) has published an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Menominee Indian Kenosha Casino project. If you have not already ordered a copy, you may do so by calling Herb Nelson at BIA, (612) 725-4510. Be sure to order the hard copy paper version. There are a number of problems with this EIS and comment period. We have outlined our concerns below in a series of statements to which you may circle AGREE, DISAGREE OR offer NO OPINION. American Land Rights and the Alliance Against Reservation Shopping AGREES with all statements, but you don’t have to. You may edit any of the statements to more closely reflect your concerns. You will make your comments far more valuable if you write, in your own words, in the box provided on the back. Please fill out this Comment Questionnaire and mail it directly to the BIA office below. Or you can send it by fax to the number provided for the BIA. Fax it early as the BIA fax line is likely to be busy. The mailing deadline for this document is Monday, March 6, 2006. Mr. Terrance L. Virden, Director, Midwest Region Comment Fax line: (612) 713-4401 Bureau of Indian Affairs Alternate Fax line: (360) 687-2973 Bishop Henry Whipple Federal Building One Federal Drive, Rm 550 Ft Snelling, MN 55111 (Having Trouble? Call Herb Nelson at BIA at (612) 725-4510) The EIS is available online at http://www.analyticalcorp.com Dear Mr. Virden: These are my comments for the official comment period on the Menominee Tribe Kenosha Casino Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) published by the Bureau of Indian Affairs with a comment deadline of March 6, 2006. Please take note of my responses to the statements below and insert my comments in the official record for the Menominee Tribe Kenosha Casino project. Please consider a photocopy of this document as valid as the original. I have signed this document below. ************************************************ PLEASE NOTE: You can get a formatted version of this Comment Questionnaire by going to www.landrights.org You can print it out and fax it in. Or just e-mail the version below. Please circle your answer – You may write additional comments by each statement or in the box on the back. Your personal handwritten or typed comments make this document much more valuable to the BIA. 1. There is no excuse for holding only just one hearing in Kenosha. Other affected communities are not given a chance to testify at a hearing hear them. At least two more hearings should be held. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 2. At this point the EIS ignores impacts on Illinois, even though the border is only six miles from the proposed Casino. BIA should redo the Environmental Impact Statement so it includes the casino impacts and social costs as far north as Milwaukee and as far south as Chicago. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 3. Communities must have a chance to say no to new casino proposals. BIA must include surrounding communities in their analysis and stop those proposals opposed by affected residents. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 4. An $808 million Kenosha gambling facility on the Wisconsin – Illinois border will drain business away from other Illinois and Wisconsin entertainment venues including hotels, restaurants and entertainment attractions. The casino should not be allowed. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 5. A Kenosha Casino will increase the number of problem gamblers in Illinois and the areas surrounding Kenosha in Wisconsin but not provide any revenues to local governments to address their increased social needs and costs. Because of the larger population outside Kenosha County, the greatest social impact will be felt in other areas. Other communities will have no say in how this casino is run or gain revenue to offset costs. All affected communities should receive payments in order to offset social costs. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 6. A Kenosha Menominee Casino will increase vehicle traffic congestion in an already congested I-94 corridor as well as US 41 and the Illinois Tollway. All of this will worsen air pollution and cause more problems for citizens trying to shop and get to work. For this reason the Casino should not be allowed. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 7. Kenosha is not the BIA designated homeland of either the Menominee or Mohegan Tribes. We should not encourage reservation shopping by allowing the Menominee and Mohegan Tribes to export gambling outside their existing reservations. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 8. The Menominee and Mohegan tribes have announced a policy of discriminating against workers outside Kenosha and all of Illinois. This policy should be changed. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 9. The social costs of the millions of gamblers using the new casino will fall disproportionately on the residents of areas outside Kenosha County. When bankruptcies, divorces, theft and suicides occur, local services funded by Illinois and Wisconsin will have to pay the cost. That means the taxpayer will have to pay. That’s not fair. It should be stopped. The Menominee Kenosha Casino should have to bear these costs. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 10. Much of the profits will flow to the Mohegan Tribe of Connecticut leaving Illinois and Wisconsin communities out in the cold. Wisconsin and Illinois should insist that all social costs be borne by the Casino. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 11. When Illinois and Wisconsin citizens gamble with the dollars they do not spend on essentials, they will have less money to spend on dining, entertainment, shopping and sporting events in our communities. Many of the small businesses offering these services will suffer. The casino should be stopped now. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 12. Many believe there should be at least a three-year moratorium on new Tribal gaming casinos to allow Congress to recognize the negative results of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) and update this act to properly regulate a business that has grown to nearly $20 billion per year. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION 13. 14. Congress should close current exceptions and loopholes whereby some tribes are allowed to impose casinos on local communities who don’t want them. Even landless tribes and tribes with no reservation should not be allowed to overpower the will of local communities. AGREE DISAGREE NO OPINION (Your written comment here will make this document more valuable) (If needed, use additional sheets or attach a personal letter) To validate your comments please fill in completely (PRINT or TYPE) and be sure to sign. Signature: __________________________________ Name: ________________________________________ Address: ________________________________Town: __________________State:________Zip: _________ E-mail: _______________________________________ Phone: __________________Fax: _______________ Please do not fail to send this comment questionnaire even if it is late. Mail Deadline Monday, March 6, 2006 Please forward this message as widely as possible. -- To unsubscribe from this mailing list; please visit http://governance.net and enter your email address.