The casino is promising that Riverside will receive 0.5% of the revenue if it is located within its city limits. They are also giving 0.5% to Washington County for being located within the County. With the projected 70 million patrons will lose at the casino that would amount to $350,000 to be returned to Riverside, and $350,000 to Washington County. If the casino is located outside of Riverside the County would the get the entire 1.0%.
Just think of what Riverside could do with that much money. Donít count your chickens before their hatched; Riverside has no room within its city limits for the casino to locate. The proposed sites lie outside of Riverside on County land. This means that Riverside would have to approach the Washington County Planning and Zoning Commission to request annexation of 400 acres into its city limits. Now if you were sitting on the commission and had the decision of allowing the annexation wouldnít you want to see Riverside take $350,000 away from the county?
Now if for some reason Riverside can convince the commission to allow the annexation, the money they receive will have to be used to upgrade the infrastructure needed to support the casinos facilities. The sewage lagoon according to the city engineer will need $800,000 to add mechanical aeration. We will need at least 1 and possibly 2 new wells. With over 115,000 projected monthly patrons traveling to the casino there will be increased usage of all our emergency services, possibly to the point of requiring full time paid staff in some of these areas. Road maintenance will increase, as will the need for safety patrols on our roads. The cost of investment for these necessities alone will use up several years of the anticipated $350,000. The cost of running and maintaining them will easily use a large portion of the money on a yearly basis.
We will be guaranteed at least 3 types of new businesses in town, pawnshops, payday loan fronts, and one gambling anonymous center.
Then there is the socioeconomic impact that comes from having a gambling boat so close to home.
Well-studied and known to cause more divorce, child abuse, foreclosures, bankruptcies, crime broken homes, violence, domestic abuse alcoholism, suicide, and poverty. Our elders will be spending their shrinking disposable income at the boat. Our state hospitals will see more patients who canít afford health insurance and medicines due to gambling problems. A few children will see their college savings blown by their parents who lose control at the boat. The sheriff of Dubuque County stated that while the gambling boat maintains security on its grounds well, the problem of domestic calls away from the boat has considerably increased since gambling was introduced there. Any law enforcement officer would agree that domestic calls are the most dangerous calls that officers are forced to deal with. Our Iowa meth-lab problem, recently awarded the worst in the country, will likely increase due to losses at the boat.