Opinion Letters

Collingwood Casino

Lisa McKean

Dear Editor:

I hope that Mayor Cooper ponders this OLG Casino proposal and moves on. Just because we are a "tourist destination" does not qualify us for a casino. As Mayor Cooper stated, there are far-reaching implications (consequences) for this sort of establishment, socially, economically, etc.. Yes, a couple of hundred good-paying jobs are a sure bet, but at the cost of our residents' possible economic downfalls. Let's face it, locals will gamble there. I'm not saying they should not have that privilege. However, many of us have low-paying jobs, multiple jobs, and are underemployed in this area. Add to that the Government's new E.I. proposals, and we are burgeoning on disaster for some folks, like seasonal employees.

The OLG has stated in all the news articles I've read that they are counting on the BILLIONS in revenue a casino would generate to help finance their growing debt load and fund other programs, all which seem to be continually parting us from our hard-earned discretionary income as it is. This should cause us all to pause a moment in our excitement about the limited employment possibilities and other promises the OLG will surely bank on to sell us on this institution.

I hope that if in the end we are the OLG's newest Gaming Zone, they also step up with a new Government funded Addictions Office, and other resources to help offset what is always the fallout from having a Casino in the region. Sorry to sound so bleak, but the stats on this stuff speak for themselves. The road to #$&$ is paved with good intentions. Good-bye OLG. Collingwood and area needs honest, reliable work for our residents, perhaps getting back towards a base in industry. The OLG does not move into an area to lose money. They will raise millions by sucking us dry. Our Council and residents need to realize that the OLG makes money not by losing, but by winning, by taking our money, by beating us. Think about this.

Lisa McKean, Collingwood

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