Originally Published: December 29, 2002 10 a.m.
The choice is simple: To ensure the continuation of limited and regulated gaming on tribal lands, vote "No" on Prop 200, "No" on Proposition 201 and "Yes" on Proposition 202.
Proposition 202 is the only initiative that meets the common interest of Arizona tribes and the people of Arizona. It is the only initiative sponsored by a coalition of 17 tribal governments, including the Yavapai Apache Nation and the Yavapai Prescott tribe, representing 90 percent of the tribal members living on reservations.
It is the only initiative that enjoys the support of 100,000 Arizonans, including: Michael R. Bluff, mayor, Town of Clarkdale; Dan Main, mayor, Town of Chino Valley; Richard Killingsworth, mayor, Town of Prescott Valley; Ruben Jauregui, mayor, City of Cottonwood; Albert Wascher, director, Yavapai Regional Medical Center; Yavapai County Democratic Party; Peter A. Sesow, director, Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce; Sen. John McCain; Clarkdale Chamber of Commerce; Phyllis Boris, board member, Yavapai Heritage Foundation; Ed Harris, board member Prescott Homeowners' and Citizens' Council; Herald Harrington, Board of Governors Yavapai Community College, and thousands of others.
These supporters recognize that Prop. 202, the 17 Tribe Initiative, is the only gaming measure that:
• Ensures the continuation of limited, regulated casino gaming on tribal lands.
• Provides more than $1.1 billion in dedicated revenues to the state for school districts statewide, emergency and trauma care and other important public services.
• Provides a mechanism for non-gaming tribes in rural locations to benefit from gaming revenues.
• Provides strengthened regulatory oversight and provides for independent audits.
Proposition 200, the Colorado River Indian Tribes proposition, is an extreme measure written and supported by just one tribe. It is poorly written, flawed and filled with loopholes. It provides little revenue to the state, rolls back regulatory oversight and has no provision for independent audits.
Wealthy, out-of-state owners of Arizona racetracks who live in Florida, California and New York are bankrolling Proposition 201, the racetrack casino gambling proposition. Proposition 201 turns racetracks into giant casinos. It threatens the continuation of Indian gaming and is devastating for the neediest tribes in most rural parts of the state.
The choice is clear. Proposition 200 represents a single interest. Proposition 201, the racetrack casino gambling proposition, serves a special interest. Only Proposition 202, the 17-Tribe Initiative, represents the common interest of tribes and the people of the state.
(Stan Turner is the chairman of the Yavapai County Democratic Party.)