Ilitch and affiliates are reportedly paying the Shinnecock's legal and lobbying bills and if the tribe wins federal recognition, Ilitch and affiliates would have the exclusive right to develop and manage any casino resort the tribe would develop and operate. According to Opensecrets.org, they have spent more than $1.6 million alone in federal lobbying activities.
Initially Ilitch and partners sought to develop a 65,000 square foot casino project in Hampton Bays part of Long Island's posh Hamptons resort area -- 4.3 miles from the tribe's offices and 85 miles from New York's Times Square. The tribe owns property known as "The Westwoods" north of Newtown Rd. and broke ground on that project in 2003. That project has subsequently met with much resistance and is stalled.
In 2007, Ilitch and her partners, made a bid that would have allowed Gateway and the Shinnecock to develop a casino resort project on the grounds of the Aqueduct Race Track in Queens, NY -- approximately 14 miles from Times Square. That casino would have been 495,000 square foot -- 7.5 times the size of the original casino proposed for the Hamptons and 4.5 times larger than Ilitch's MotorCity Casino in Detroit.
Now the Shinnecock tribe, which has had its desire for federal recognition fast-tracked thanks to funding and support from Ilitch and affiliates, is bidding to develop and operate a casino project at Belmont Park Race Track -- approximately 19 miles from New York's Times Square. Presumably Ilitch's affiliates are part of this latest Shinnecock casino scheme.
Marian Ilitch and her husband Mike Ilitch own the Detroit Red Wings NHL franchise and c0-founded Little Caesars pizza stores. He also owns the Detroit Tigers and she owns the struggling MotorCity Casino, one of three large Las Vegas-style casino properties in Detroit. Their parent company is the privately held Ilitch Holdings, Inc.
as proposed by Shinnecock/Gateway
View Various Proposed Shinnecock Casino Sites in a larger map