Saturday, October 15, 2011

Ilitch Taking Over Nassau County, New York? Plan includes Baseball, Hockey, Shinnecock Indian Casinos

Review this plan from Nassau County, New York, home of the famed Belmont Park & Race Track. If this doesn't have Ilitch Family, Michael Malik fingerprints all over it: Baseball, Hockey, Shinnecock Indian Casinos....
Accelerate Nassau Now

Friday, October 14, 2011

Ilitch Gets Richer on the backs of Detroit's working class; Detroit still America's most Dangerous City

Detroit casinos revenue up overall; Greektown lags

By Jaclyn Trop

Detroit's three casinos recorded a strong 4.1 percent increase in revenue in September to $113.8 million compared with the same month last year, according to the state Gaming Control Board.

It is the best year-over-year comparison since April. Both April and September had five Fridays this year, but April also had five Saturdays.

"That's probably worth 3 percent or so of the 4 percent (growth)," said Frank Fantini, editor and publisher of Delaware-based Fantini's Gaming & Lodging Reports.

MotorCity Casino Hotel, the second-largest gaming hall by revenue, led the way with a 10.4 percent jump over last September to $38.4 million.

MGM Grand Detroit, the largest, followed with a 4.5 percent increase to $48.6 million.

Greektown Casino Hotel, the smallest, experienced a 4.4 percent decline in September revenues. Construction on Greektown's gaming floor, which reopened on Sept. 23 after about seven weeks, may havecut customer visits andrevenues.

The Detroit casino market has experienced revenue growth through the first nine months of this year as Michigan's economy initially showed signs of a rebound and then stagnated during the past three months as the state's jobless rate increased.

And did we mention that once again from Forbes: Detroit was named the #1 Most Dangerous City in America?

See also, 

Letter-to-the-Editor: No Shinnecock Casino at Belmont; Stay in Suffolk County


I am against a Shinnecock Indian casino at Belmont Park ["Two pols back Belmont casino plan," News, Oct. 7]. Genting Corp. paid $380 million to New York State for a slots license at Aqueduct Racetrack and will contribute millions more to the state and the horse-racing industry. What will the Shinnecock Indians give?

From what I understand, the Indian casinos upstate contribute very little. Being just eight miles away would hurt Aqueduct's business and take money from the state and horsemen.

The Shinnecocks should build a casino closer to their home in eastern Suffolk County. That would give good jobs to many of their deserving members as well as help the faltering tourist industry in  Suffolk County and the Hamptons.

Joseph Kushner

Detroiters Marian Ilitch & Mike Malik with the Shinnecock pushing this Casino Development for New York's Belmont Park

Google Earth | Belmont Park & Race Track

As explained in NewsDay 10.13.201:  
The Shinnecock Indian Nation has laid out its vision for a casino complex at Belmont Park in Elmont, disclosing that it would build a 500-room hotel and casino-entertainment complex on the western end of the property, renovate a Long Island Rail Road station and create a park and soccer field on the property's south lot. The tribe disclosed its plans Thursday night at a civic meeting in Elmont. The hotel and casino would be built on the upper left of the map where the LIRR station is located.

Detroit-based Gateway Casino Resorts has exclusive rights to develop and manage any Shinnecock Indian Nation casinos although that entity has never done so before. Gateway is controlled by Detroiters Michael Malik, a controversial wheeler-dealer, and Marian Ilitch. Her husband owns the Detroit Tigers, and they own the Detroit Red Wings and Little Caesars pizza. She owns Detroit's MotorCity Casino. The Ilitch/Malik partnership has not developed or managed an Indian casino since parting company with former partner Tom Celani who has successfully gone on to open and manage numerous commercial gaming and Indian casinos across the U.S.  Any Shinnecock casino would be the first such Ilitch/Malik venture. Further Malik failed to receive a gaming license in Michigan in 1999 and as such, was forced out of the MotorCity Casino partnership. Due to his controversial background and character, it is unclear if he could obtain a gaming license from the National Indian Gaming Commission.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Like Bay Mills in Flint Township; Sault Ste Marie Chippewa seek Off-Reservation Casino

Legal experts say bringing a tribal casino to Lansing faces huge hurdles

Building a tribal casino in Lansing might be harder than you think — in fact, its almost impossible to bring a tribal casino to the city, legal experts say.

“I don’t see any possibility of a tribal casino being allowed to be constructed in the city of Lansing,” said Robert Stocker II, chairman of the gaming practice group at Dickinson Wright law firm in Lansing. The group deals with both Indian and commercial gaming issues and MGM Grand is listed on the firm’s client list on its website.

Stocker’s remarks should be taken in the context of the highly competitive nature of the $10 billion-a-year casino industry in Michigan, since his firm’s website says it represents Detroit’s MGM Grand Casino. Still his remarks are consistent with those of other experts who don’t have clear ties to other casinos.

Two weeks ago, Ted O’Dell of the Lansing Jobs Coalition, which led a petition drive seeking a referendum on whether voters want a casino, told City Pulse that the Sault Ste. Marie Chippewa Tribe was in negotiations with city officials to build a tribal casino in the city. The proposal would create 1,500 new jobs and 300 construction jobs, O’Dell said. The Lansing Jobs Coalition has been researching building a casino since January as a way to bring jobs to Lansing.

The Bernero administration has neither confirmed nor denied that such negotiations are under way, but Mayor Virg Bernero issued a statement strongly endorsing the idea of a casino in Lansing because of the “tremendous” economic benefit... (Complete Story)

Has Lansing (MI) hired Dennis Whitlesey (Dickinson Wright)?


by Nyssa Rabinowitz
...O’Dell also told City Pulse that the city had retained Dickinson Wright to look into the legal nuances for bringing a casino to the city, but Stocker denied those claims... (Complete Story)

Barstow Beware: Under Shane Chapparosa's Leadership, Los Coyotes' Approach to Dispute Resolution?



A bitter dispute between the Los Coyotes Band of Mission Indians in Warner Springs and a company that operates a military training facility on the North County reservation has spilled into court.

The Eagle Rock Training Center, which leased land on the reservation for the training facility that also serves as a set for Hollywood film crews, filed a lawsuit Sept. 15 after the tribe attempted to evict the business, according to documents filed in federal court.

The training center operators claim the tribe is trying to renege on their 25-year lease agreement.

Officials with the training center also allege that the dispute contributed to a hostile environment that led to the burning of a guard shack on July 21. The fire burned about 22 square miles of wildland before firefighters were able to stop it. [Eagle Fire]

Two tribal members, Jeremy Ortiz, 23, and Jesse Durbin, 23, were charged in August with setting the fire. Both men pleaded not guilty.

After the tribe gave the training center an eviction notice June 16, Eagle Rock officials said in court documents that they attempted to negotiate with the tribe to clarify the lease agreement. But tribal officials "failed to negotiate in good faith," according to the lawsuit.

"Members of Los Coyotes even threatened to take matters into their own hands if ERTC did not vacate the property -- tragically, such threats came to fruition when the tribe allowed certain tribal members to take matters into their own hands by pouring gasoline on ERTC's security booth and lighting it on fire, and destroying new surveillance cameras that were installed after the fire," according to court documents... (Complete Story)
For nearly a decade, Detroit casino syndicators (Michael Malik & Marian Ilitch) have been using the Los Coyotes tribe, and others, to front an opportunity that could allow the Detroiters to build and manage a $160 million casino in Barstow (CA).  In part, approvals for such a venture hinge on the ability of the tribe to prove the Los Coyotes Reservation in Warner Springs (CA) is unsuitable for business purposes.

When the Detroiters woke up to realize Francine Kupsch had signed the deal with Eagle Rock which agreed to pay the tribe 10 percent of its profits, plus build a new tribal hall and a children's playground, among other things, they could not have been too happy. After all, they claim to have spent millions already attempting to protect their exclusive rights to a Barstow casino franchise.

According to court documents, Eagle Rock had spent about $450,000 paying Los Coyotes rent payments and improvements to the children's park and training facilities, according to court documents. Adding value to the deal between Los Coyotes and Eagle Rock was the fact that  ERTC was also being used as a set for Hollywood film crews.

The last time these tribal leaders had a major dispute and were attempting to evict people from their Reservation (2000), they took up firearms and the San Diego County Sheriff had to get involved. (Indians aim to drive family from tribe in vicious dispute; San Diego Union-Tribune; April 9, 2000)

And did we mention that once again, Detroit was named the #1 Most Dangerous City in America?

You might also want to see: Los Coyotes tribal leader calls Barwest's Mike Malik "devil;" says he has "seduced" younger tribal leaders.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Growing List of NY Politicians Rejecting $$$ from Ilitch Partner Michael Malik

New York Lawmakers chosing to distance themselves 
from Detroit Syndicator with history breaking laws

Some of New York’s politicians have had their hands out and are blindly banking campaign contributions from Detroit casino syndicator Michael Malik; then, publicly supporting his Long Island gambling schemes.  Reps. Carolyn McCarthy and Tim Bishop are two examples.

On the other hand, some elected officials, including New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, are onto his ways and this past year have rejected Malik’s money and association. 

See where they stand:

Said “No” to Malik
REJECTED Syndicator’s $$$

Said “Yes” to Malik
ACCEPTED Syndicator’s $$$
  • Braunstein, Assemblyman Edward
  • Cuomo, Governor Andrew
  • Johnson, Senator Craig
  • Klein, Senator Jeffrey

  • Bishop, Rep. Timothy
  • Gillibrand, US Senator Kirsten
  • Kruger, Senator Carl
  • McCarthy, Rep. Carolyn
  • Rangel, Rep. Charles
  • Schumer, US Senator Charles

For almost a decade Detroit gambling syndicator Mike Malik has financed and orchestrated efforts intended to win him (and Mrs. Marian Ilitch) the right to develop and run gambling halls in the New York City marketplace.  He is using the Shinnecock Indian Nation to front his schemes.  But he and his partners have dumped millions trying to influence politicians and win their favor.  And all along he’s been expanding his resume as a notorious law-breaker.

  • Tangled up in a federally prosecuted Ponzi scheme case, in partnership with the ringleader who is now a fugitive hiding out in Brazil, and forced to repay $170,000 obtained fraudulently. 
  • Found guilty and on probation for violating Arizona’s firearms laws.
  • Found to have violated campaign finance laws repeatedly (2006 & 2009) and fined a total of $10,000+ for his actions.
  • Denied a gaming license in Michigan; reportedly because the MGCB had concerns stemming from IRS tax issues and a domestic violence arrest for which Malik served on year’s probation after beating his then-girlfriend’s 12-year-old son. 
Cuomo, Braunstein, Johnson & Klein decided to distance themselves from Malik given his controversial, law-breaking history.

See also:

Politics at Bay Mills Indian Community has Parker (Mike Malik) Cranking Up the Volume on Economic Development Dreams

Wondering why it was that Bay Mills Tribal Chair Jeff Parker fueled speculation about a Bay Mills casino in Flint Township (MI) and  appeared at the Flint Township Board of Trustees meeting or enabled (maybe encourage) the Port Huron Times Herald columnist Mike Connell to wax, Parker says casino will open next year, or the Flint Township View to report, Bay Mills casino developers want police, fire agreements?

Could it be this...


Primary election to narrow field of candidates in Bay Mills

The Primary Election for Bay Mills Indian Community will be held on Oct. 19. Please note: The election will be held at the Armella B. Parker Senior Center from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Any member of Bay Mills Indian Community who is 18 years or older may vote in the Primary and General Elections. The following people are running for office:

Executive Council President: Jeff Parker, Kurt Perron, Terry Carrick
Vice President: Joseph LeBlanc, Allyn Cameron, Corrine Cameron
Secretary: Richard LeBlanc, Sherri Schofield, Greg Parker
Treasurer: John P. Lufkins, Diane Teeple, Paula Carrick
Councilperson: Dwight "Bucko" Teeple, Jason A. LeBlanc, Sr., Alexander Easton, Brenda Bjork Chief Judge: Shelly Deuman, Leah M. Parish, Arthur J. LeBlanc, Levi D. Carrick, Sr., Robert Passage
Appellate Judge: Lynda Parrish-Pesola, Tim Kinney II, Randy Touchtone, Shannon Belk, Justin Teeple

Any registered voter who will not be able to cast their ballot in person may request the election Committee to issue them an absentee ballot. Such request may be made in person or by mail and signed by the person requesting the ballot. In any case, the request must be made 36 hours before the election. Reason for requesting absentee ballot must be given, as absentee ballots are for individuals unable to vote in person. Direct your request to Bay Mills Tribal Office, 12140 W. Lakeshore Dr., Brimley MI 49715 ATTN:Election Committee

If you have any questions, please call the tribal office for more information. The telephone number is 906-248-8100, ask for Kathi Carrick or Andrea Kinney. 
Politics 101A strategy employed by Mike Malik/Tom Shields and crew:  Pump up the volume on anything that looks like economic development -- even make believe, pie-in-the-sky stuff that has little, or even no chance of materializing. Just say it does!

Don't believe it? Take a look at news coverage during Port Huron (CA) or Barstow (CA) local political elections for the last decade. Malik and crew roll into town and crank up the volume about local economic development hopes. Make your constituents think you're bringin' home the bacon. Then as soon as their political pawns are re-elected, Marian's boys head home to Detroit or back to the Manhattan Penthouse or the Hamptons hide-a-way or their Palm Beach party crib or wherever.

Malik had Jeff Parker re-installed as Chairman about a decade ago, and during the last couple of Bay Mills election cycles tribal members have challenged his leadership and his ongoing "relationship" with, and "business ties" to the controversial Michael Malik. Tribal members are anxious for something real, not the continual economic carrots that Parker/Malik have dangled for a decade.

See these related posts:

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Another Detroit Sanctioned Los Coyotes Leadership Coup; plus Lawsuits, Arson, Blackwater and "Bonfiglio?"

The Eagle Fire started when a Los Coyotes member torched an
Eagle Rock guard shack. - Photo courtesy of Cal Fire San Diego
Clearly the Detroiters using the Los Coyotes Tribe as a tool to achieve their dreams of developing and running  a casino in Barstow (CA) are catalysts, if not wholly responsible for, this upheaval  (updated in the excerpts below from at the Los Coyotes Reservation.

As you read this, consider that the character mentioned in the article as Shane Chapparosa is a tool of the Detroit casino interests.  Whenever they fear trouble, they trot him out, prop him up – and reward him – to act as the new Chair of the tribe.  At least twice before the Detroiters have had to “arrange” for his leadership of the tribe when the then-true-leader attempts to take the tribe in a direction that might not be in the Detroiters’ best interest.

But since June, Los Coyotes—a tribe of about 300 members—has been trying to boot the company off its land, claiming the lease was never valid. The conflict has since escalated to a series of showdowns, which ERTC alleges led to the arson [allegedly STARTED BY TWO TRIBAL MEMBERS] that caused the 14,000-acre Eagle fire in July...

An eviction deadline was extended until July 29 as the parties continued to negotiate. The tribe asked to review upcoming training plans, which it would evaluate before allowing them to proceed. Meanwhile, ERTC began to threaten legal action if the Notice to Vacate was not rescinded. It was against this backdrop that tribal member and former ERTC employee Jeremy Ortiz and Jesse Durbin allegedly stole ERTC surveillance cameras, then poured gasoline on an ERTC guard shack and set it alight, kicking off the Eagle fire. Ortiz admitted to the crime, according to an arrest warrant in the criminal case file.

...During the last two weeks, the dispute has come to a head, with tribal police informing ERTC that its employees, customers and equipment would be ejected from the reservation. In response, ERTC filed a federal lawsuit on Sept. 16, asking for a temporary restraining order. The request was withdrawn when the tribe temporarily agreed to allow a military training event scheduled for Sept. 21 to go ahead. The overall dispute has not been resolved.

In filing the suit, ERTC released dozens of pages of records, including contracts, plans and correspondence that shine a light on how the military contractor attempted to bypass state and county regulations by building on Indian land.

As early as 2006, former Blackwater Vice President Brian Bonfiglio wanted to build a training facility in San Diego County. The initial plans were abandoned in 2008, following significant community outcry (though Bonfiglio asserted the activism had no impact on the decision). Around the same time, he approached the Los Coyotes tribe, an impoverished community that had long struggled to find a way to capitalize on land that was otherwise unsuitable for commercial development...

Brian “Bonfiglio?”  Interesting, because the Detroiters (Michael Malik/MJM Enterprises) at one time employed Barbara Bonfiglio, a rather connected GOP lobbyist in Washington, D.C.  Ms. Bonfiglio was so well connected that she got caught up in the political scandals that brought down House Speaker Tom DeLay, Senator Rick Santorum, and Reps. Richard Pombo and Don Young.  Then one day, without notice, she packed up her desk at Williams & Jensen, and went under the radar.  The firm was tight-lipped about her departure.  She’s since surfaced as an executive at Pfizer.

...In March 2010, Bonfiglio struck a six-year deal with the tribe’s chairperson, Francine Kupsch, under which the facility would be built on the reservation and the tribe would receive a 10-percent slice of the profits. In November 2010, Kupsch authorized an extension of the lease until 2035, with the added requirement that ERTC build a children’s playground and a 1,250-square-foot tribal office and hall. Two tribal members who owned part of the land that would become an asphalt driving track would receive $500 in monthly rent. The agreement also included a waiver of the tribe’s right to sovereign immunity from the U.S. court system.

What the document does not contain was the tribe’s official seal of approval, even though there’s a place for it on the agreement.

Kupsch was replaced as chairperson on Jan. 1 by Shane Chapparosa, under whose watch the tribe developed concerns with the 25-year agreement.... (Complete Story at

Poor Francine Kupsch, when she was of use to the Malik & his Detroiters, they trotted her out in Sacramento, exploited her personal circumstances with photos and stories they sent out over PR wires and had her stage a hunger-strike/sit-in on the grounds of the State Capitol.  Now, they’ve had her tossed out as Chair!  [Note to Tribal Chairs:  whenever the Detroiters, aka the bully Mike Malik, fear they’re losing their grip on your Tribe, they arrange a coup and toss out the Chair.  Take a look at the case of Los Coyotes respected elder Katherine Siva Saubel; or one-time Bay Mills Indian Community leader John Lufkins.]

Worth Consideration:  Los Coyotes, Barwest, Michael Malik ↔ Barbara Bonfiglio ↔ DeLay, Santorum, etc. ↔ GOP  ↔ Bush ↔ Texas ↔ Blackwater ↔ ERTC ↔ Brian Bonfiglio ↔ Los Coyotes

NY Governor Cuomo Latest To Reject Campaign Contributions from Ilitch Gambling Partner Michael Malik

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo rejects campaign $$$ from
controversial Detroit wheeler-dealer Michael Malik
New information available via Transparency Data a project of the Sunlight Foundation, indicates that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has joined the ranks of New York politicians refusing to accept campaign gifts from controversial Detroit casino syndicator Michael Malik. 

On October 18, 2010, Governor Cuomo’s campaign committee returned a $10,000 check that Malik had attempted to funnel to the campaign via the Democratic Committee of New York State on September  28, 2010.

Cuomo joins the growing ranks of New York politicians who have returned or otherwise rejected campaign contributions from Malik during the last year.  They included:
  •  Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein
  • Senator Craig M. Johnson (ret.)
  • Senator Jeffrey D. Klein

During the 2010 election, voters and the media turned up the heat questioning the motivations of US Rep. Tim Bishop and called upon him to also reject Malik’s bankroll.

To quiet things down, Bishop indicated he would consider and then might return Malik’s money.  He didn’t!

In fact, on March 31, 2011, Rep. Bishop banked another $2,500 from his pal Malik.  Bishop has also publicly endorsed Malik’s schemes to use the Shinnecock Indians to establish casinos Malik will run nearest to the New York City/Manhattan marketplace.

Malik a Detroit-area native, can not get a gaming license in Michigan. Since 1999, despite several attempts, Malik has failed to get a license from the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB). His schemes for New York won't require him to get a gaming license from the State.

When you look historically into the campaign finance violations, questionable ethics and circumstances that Malik got tangled up in with pals like former Reps. Don Young and Richard Pombo (fundraising, lobbying, travel & other gifts), one can only consider what else Malik’s up to with “support” for Rep. Bishop or even worse, a character like Rep. Charlie Rangel.  It should be noted that Young and Pombo failed to win re-election after getting in bed with Malik.

U.S. Rep Carolyn McCarthy has also accepted Malik’s money.  This last week, NewsDay reported she too was publicly endorsing Malik’s schemes to use the Shinnecock Indian Nation as a way for him to develop and run a gambling complex at Belmont Park on Long Island.

Malik and fellow Detroiter Marian Ilitch (Mrs. Mike Ilitch: Detroit Tigers, Red Wings, Little Caesars pizza) are business partners. He shares office space alongside hers in the executive suites at Ilitch Holdings, Inc. But, he's not an Ilitch "employee." If he was, his tactics -- sometimes illegal, and often borderline unethical behavior -- would become an issue for the Family's businesses.  Think of Malik as the black hat, bag man, to Marian's white hat.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Detroiters' Gambling Advocate Hired as Hawaii Governor's Communications Director

Governor Abercrombie has a new Communications Director, replacing Josh Levinson, who announced his resignation last week. The job goes to James Boersema, a retired Army colonel who has handled communications for the State Senate for the past year.

Boersma is an experienced public relations strategist, who has worked for corporate clients including Bank of Hawaii and for politicians, including former Governor Ben Cayetano when he was Lieutenant Governor.

Boersema, 66, has significant connections in the business and labor communities. He is chairman of Unity House, a nonprofit labor organization that is going through bankruptcy. He is chairman of the board of directors at ‘Olelo Community Media, the community access cable network. He is on the board at Pacific Historic Parks, which helps with educational materials and museum exhibits at national parks at Pearl Harbor, Kalaupapa, Saipan and Guam.

Boersema is also one of five owners of Zanzabar, a popular nightclub in Waikiki.

Boersema has been among the advocates for casino gambling on Oahu. He and Jack Seigle — a principal at Starr Seigle, which has since been acquired and absorbed into the Anthology Marketing Group — were involved with the Coalition for Economic Diversity, which made an aggressive pitch to legalize gambling a decade ago.

Boersema, along with then-Gov. Cayetano and Charles Toguchi — Cayetano's former chief of staff and a close ally to Abercrombie — visited the Atlantis resort and casino in the Bahamas in 2000. Sun International Hotels, which developed Atlantis, at the time wanted to open a casino in West Oahu.

This year, while serving as Senate communications director, Boersema favored the concept of establishing a casino at a Waikiki hotel.

Zanzibar pops up at the end of this story: A "Culture Of Violence" At Waikiki Nightspot
More Zanzibar: Waikiki night clubs address after hours crime 

Detroiters Marian Ilitch and Michael Malik have been pushing commercial gambling in Hawaii for a decade; although things had somewhat quieted until earlier this year.  With their Hawaiian advocates, they made a big push for their single Waikiki casino scheme during Hawaii's legislative session but they failed.

Tom Shields, the Michigan-based PR mouthpiece for Ilitch/Malik retained his Hawaiian-based colleagues Jack Seigle (Starr Seigle) and John Radcliffe to help with the first major push in 2001. Seigle and company formed the "Coalition for Economic Diversity" as a so-called third-party advocate for the Detroiters' interests. Boersma was at one time a vice president and partner at Starr Seigle.    

Hawaii and Utah are the only two states that have no form of legal gaming.

Detroit #1 on Forbes' List of America's Most Dangerous Cities!

The Benefits of Casino Gaming?

Click to see Dangerous Cities List
For 15 years Detroiters like Michael Malik and Marian Ilitch have told people there that opening up gambling halls would bring the kind of positive economic change that Detroit needs to turn itself around.  The same thing they tell people in Port Huron or Flint (MI), or Elmont (NY), or Barstow (CA). 

Really?  Because Detroit’s three gambling halls have been open and even expanded during this past decade and yet...
From Forbes this past week:
Detroit is America’s #1 Most Dangerous City!
From Huffington Post in March:
New census data indicates Detroit's population dropped by a startling 25 percent in the last decade, from 951,270 in 2000 to 713,777 last year. That's a 60 percent decline from its 1950 peak population -- 1.85 million -- and the lowest count since the 1910 Census put the then-promising Motor City's population at 285,704.
From last January:During the 10 years ended in the 1st Quarter of 2011, Detroit Home Prices had the worst performance in the country, with appreciation during the decade of -26%. 
From the U.S. Dept of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Who Really Benefits from Casino Gaming?
The Ilitch Family (owners of Detroit’s Motor Casino, Red Wings Hockey and Tigers Baseball teams, and Little Caesars’ pizza), Michael Malik and their other PR agents have used those same economic benefit arguments every time they want something from Detroit’s hard working taxpayers – when they want to condemn property or get the Deed City controlled property for "free" (without consideration);  when they ask taxpayers to fund demolition of buildings they’ve let fall into disrepair;  when they secure ticket tax breaks; or worse yet, want the taxpayers to subsidize their parking, sports and entertainment venues.

In truth, the only Detroiters better off today than they were 10 years ago have the last name “Ilitch.”
Last month, in its annual ranking of the 400 Richest Americans, Forbes reported that during the last year, the Ilitch family’s net worth went from $1.7 Billion to $2.0 Billion!  They are #212 on the list of 400 Richest Americans.   In 2004, Forbes estimated the Ilitch Family’s worth at $750 million.

Beware Detroiters who roll into your town and extol the economics of casino development!  They only people who will be enriched are the Detroiters.  They’ll even prey on their own.

Rep. Tim Bishop (D-NY) Caught Taking More Money from Notorious Law-Breaking Detroit Casino Syndicator

Rep. Tim Bishop (D-NY)
During the 2010 election cycle US Rep. Timothy Bishop (D-NY) came under fire for accepting contributions from Detroiter Michael Malik. After some heel-dragging by the Bishop campaign, it was reported that Rep. Bishop would return the funds he received from Malik. He did not!

Rather, according to records available at, Bishop accepted an additional $2,500 from Malik on March 31, 2011.

Bishop is one of a handful of Long Island politicians helping Malik use the Shinnecock Indian Nation to advance his own schemes to bring gambling ventures convenient to the New York City marketplace.

In recent years, Detroit gambling syndicator Michael Malik, a controversial character with a history of law-breaking, has been:
US Rep Tim Bishop | Contributions Report

Is there any doubt that Detroiters Marian Ilitch and Mike Malik are behind this latest courtroom drama?



...The lawsuit comes amid renewed efforts by the tribe to build a $160 million casino in Barstow, halfway between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. The project, which has been in the works for nearly a decade, appeared to be dead three years ago. That is when the federal government denied an application to take a plot of land in Barstow into trust, which would make it part of the tribe's reservation, in order to build the casino.

Last year, the project got a second wind when the U.S. Department of Interior allowed an appeal to proceed.

To get the land transfer, Los Coyotes must prove, in part, that its reservation is unsuitable for business purposes. Critics of the casino project say the Eagle Rock lease agreement makes that argument less believable.

According to the lawsuit, Eagle Rock agreed to pay the tribe 10 percent of its profits, and build a new tribal hall and a children's playground, among other things.

Overall, the company has spent about $450,000 on rent payments and improvements to the children's park and training facilities, according to court documents.

Eagle Rock is asking the court to declare the lease agreement valid and to award the company compensatory damages, but does not give a specific amount.

In January, the tribe's leadership changed. Kupsch was replaced by Chairman Shane Chapparosa.

Radoff said there may have been a change in the tribe's plans when the new chairman came into office, but he declined to discuss "internal tribal deliberations."

Eagle Rock officials say they believed the tribe had approved the lease because the company had not been told otherwise, according to the lawsuit. Representatives of the company attended a tribal council meeting in January to discuss the children's park and gave members of the tribal council tours of the leased property in March... (Complete Story)
In August, two members of the Los Coyotes Tribe, Jeremy Ortiz and Jesse Durbin, were arrested on arson charges alleging they started what California authorities call the "Eagle Fire." That incident ended up burning 14,100 acres (22 square miles) in northern San Diego County this past July. Eighteen injuries occurred during the fire which cost California taxpayers  $15.5 million to battle.

It is alleged the Los Coyotes pair, Ortiz and Durbin, broke into the Eagle Rock Training Center (ERTC), disassembled surveillance cameras and then torched the guard shack at ERTC.

Torching 22 square miles... that's one way to validate claims that your reservation is uninhabitable or otherwise offers no natural resources of any value.  On the other hand, Barstow officials ought to be concerned about Los Coyotes' approach to dispute resolution!

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Vision for Bay Mills' Vanderbilt Casino

The Bay Mills Indian Community took a gamble and opened a very small casino in Vanderbilt (MI) last November (2010).  Shortly after opening the facility with 38 slot machines, the tribe began expansion of the facility.  After closing for a couple of days in early 2011 they opened a facility twice its original size.  The tribe followed a Court directive in March and closed its doors.

Should the tribe prevail in current court action and be allowed to re-open its Vanderbilt gambling site, the graphic below gives one an idea of what the next phase of their plans might look like.

This graphic was given to Vanderbilt village leaders

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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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