Sunday, October 12, 2008

Dykema lobbyists disclose they are behind Ilitch backed plans for Port Huron casino

According to official documents filed on 10.09.2005 with the U.S. Congress, nearly a week after the 110th Congress adjourned, the lobbying/law firm Dykema Gossett disclosed it had been lobbying on behalf of Michael J. Malik's Blue Water Resorts since 09.05.2008.

The official disclosure document indicates that two lobbyists, Nancy Barbour and Elliott Hall (also a lobbyist for Corning, Inc. and Ford Motor Company), were lobbying for the passage of H.R. 2176, a bill that was overwhelmingly defeated a little more than two month earlier (06.25.2008) on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. reports that attorneys affiliated with Dykema Gossett have contributed nearly $320,000 to federal election committees during the 2008 election cycle.

Blue Water Resorts has paid lobbyists at least $585,000. Another Malik controlled casino affiliate MJM Enterprises Development, founded in 1993, has paid lobbyists $710,000. The Bay Mills Indian Community has paid lobbyists $1,670,000. That's a total of almost $3 million to federal lobbyists.

Blue Water Resorts, L.L.C., was formed by Detroit casino syndicator Michael Malik on 07.10.2001. A second entity, Blue Water Resorts Manager, Inc. was formed by a Malik attorney on 09.06.2005. Both entities are believed to be the financing mechanisms for a proposed Port Huron Indian casino that Malik has proposed in partnership with the Bay Mills Indian Community.

Attorneys affiliatd with Dykema Gossett have been intimately involved with Malik's schemes for the proposed Port Huron casino dating back to Gov. John Engler's last term in office; notably, R. Lance Boldrey, a former aide and counselor to Engler who negotiated an agreement between the Bay Mills tribe and the State of Michigan that would pave the way for the off-reservation casino, and Richard McClellan, Engler's close friend and political operative.

Also backing Malik's Port Huron casino scheme are members of Detroit's Ilitch Family (Mike Ilitch & Marian Ilitch). Dykema represented Marian Ilitch in her acquisition of complete control of Detroit's MotorCity Casino in several public offerings intended to raise capital for Ilitch's purchase and expansion of MotorCity Casino. Malik was once a partner in MotorCity Casino but failed to receive a gaming license from the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB).

Malik and senior members of the Ilitch Family have contributed nearly $800,000 to federal campaign committees during their pursuits for a Port Huron casino.

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