Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Where does Rep. Bart Stupak come up with this stuff?

An article published 6.25.08 in the Detroit News announcing the sound defeat of bills that would have paved the way for an expansion of off-reservation Indian casinos in Michigan reads:

"Rep. Bart Stupak, D-Menominee, said non-Indian homeowners at Charlotte Beach have seen their property values assessed at 90 percent below value because of the legal cloud over the land. "
Rep. Stupak should surface the basis for his comments. And he should report when it was that he received such "facts."

Could it have been during the brief period back in the late 1990s when the Bay Mills Indian Community filed court action on their so-called land claims? Because those claims were subsequently tossed out by both state and federal courts seemingly clearing the sky of any "clouds" over title to local land. And there seems to be no public record of concerned property owners since then. Documents filed for local real estate transactions don't support Stupak's representations either.

During congressional hearings in recent years on the matter there were never any Charlotte Beach landowners who testified. Nor did anyone representing any collection of property owners appear.

There has been no grassroots advocacy on behalf of the "agrieved" property owners in the 110-acre Charlotte Beach subdivision located on Michigan's eastern Upper Penninsula, with one exception: Detroit casino syndicator Michael Malik.

But in fact, Malik, the businessman who has a financial interest in advancing the settlement scheme has acquired and sold land in Charlotte Beach at a profit. What would have compelled a businessman like Malik to buy Charlotte Beach land at a price greater than what the previous owner had paid just several years prior; and then enabled Malik to turn around and sell it to someone else at a profit a short time later. Hhhmmmmm?

Shame on Stupak's staff, they should really do a better job arming their boss with facts they've gathered independently.

Rep. Stupak should get current and come clean about his representations and what he would imply are "facts." Relying soley on what casino syndicator Mike Malik and his battalion of attorneys and lobbyists have represented isn't smart. And certainly relying on a factoid someone tossed in his lap nearly ten years ago isn't smart either.

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