Thursday, November 03, 2011

Was it Dennis Whittlesey's Intent to make the case for Michael Malik's Los Coyotes Barstow (Off-Reservation) Casino?

For more than 15 years, attorney Dennis Whittlesey has been a tool of Detroit gambling promoters.  Among other things, Detroiter Michael Malik’s crew has previously introduced him into their Barstow (CA) casino schemes.  With his latest article is Whittlesey making the case for Malik’s Los Coyotes casino in Barstow, 165 miles away from the tribe’s so-called "remote" and "undevelopable," geographically undesireable San Diego County reservation?


By Dennis J. Whittlesey
...The casino site is located on the Dry Creek Rancheria, a small federal fee tract of land located some seven miles east of U.S. Highway 101 at Geyserville. Visitors must drive a two-lane country road to reach the site, and then navigate a narrow, winding country road (now paved) up a steep hillside to the casino itself. Water supply and waste disposal have been problems in the past, although one of the project's worst problems was that the hill was unstable and a major "hillside stabilization project" had to be completed before major construction could be commenced. That project reportedly cost some $15 million at the time.

Because of the narrow roads serving the casino site from U.S. 101, access always has been a concern. Indeed, a major component of the refinancing would provide funding to construct an emergency access road.

Prior to the casino's construction, the Alexander Valley Association (an organization consisting of the landowners within the valley) even brokered agreements with local and federal officials and politicians that would have facilitated a rare off-reservation casino development. Proposed sites for the casino were located adjacent to U.S. 101 and featured easy access to the site. Comprehensive utility services were in place for each of the prospective sites, not the least of which were those for water and sewer. For reasons never made clear, the tribe and its developers rejected all of these alternative locations in favor of using Rancheria land.

The tried and true axiom for any real estate acquisition is "location, location, location." A prime consideration for many casino developments has been the ability to "capture" highway traffic to augment the local population clientele. While there are no known publicly released studies identifying the capture rate for River Rock, geographical location may raise some concerns.

The casino is constructed, so relocating to improve the capture rate may not be a viable option. With the challenges in today's finance markets, the consequences of past decisions can be, and often are, amplified. The confluence of today's "new [ab]normal" finance markets and past decisions may well spin the tale of River Rock when its story is finally written.

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certainly must reads!

Ilitch has backed loosing sports teams and pizza, but casinos in Detroit? 10.09.06 ● Marian Ilitch #1 on "25 Most Powerful People" to Watch 2006” global gaming business o1.oo.o5 ● My Kingdom for a Casino Forbes 05.08.06 ● Big Lagoon’s casino dream awakens north coast journal 07.28.05 ● Shinnecocks launch legal claim to Hamptons land 06.16.05 ● Ilitch Plans to Expand Casino Empire 07.05.05 ● Ilitch outbids partners 04.14.05 ● Ilitch enmeshed in NY casino dispute 03.20.05 ● Marian Ilitch, high roller 03.20.05 ● MGM Mirage to Decide on Offer for Casino in Detroit 04.16.05 ● Secret deal for MotorCity alleged 02.15.05 ● Los Coyotes get new developer 02.08.05 Detroit casino figure to finance Barstow project 07.07.03 ● Indian Band trying to put casino in Barstow 06.04.03 Pizza matriarch takes on casino roles 10.23.02 ● Vanderbilt gets short straw in negotiations for a casino Lansing Journal 10.06.02 ● Indians aim to drive family from tribe in vicious dispute san diego union tribune 04.09.00 ●Malik owns 2000 Michigan Quarter Horse of the Year 01.01.00 ● Detroit Team to run Michigan’s newest Indian casino 05.23.99 Tiger ties tangle Marian Ilitch 04.29.99 ● Three investors must sell their Detroit casino interests 04.25.99 ● Partners’ cash revived election; They say money was crucial to Prop-E 04.25.99 Investors have troubled histories las vegas review journal 04.27.99 ● Investor served probation for domestic assault on 12 year old boy 04.25.99 Can a pair win a jackpot?: local men hope to... 03.17.97

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