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Op-ed: Loss of casino haunts Mason City (by Peter Children)

I can’t help but wonder what all the nay sayers think after reading the article concerning the pay out made to the Worth County Development Authority in the amount of $1.88 million.  But what you may not be aware of is this casino has handed out a total of $22.M since it opened its doors.

But wait….there is more, much more. It has created jobs, has caused two hotel being built in a county that here to fore never had the need for even one. It has help spawn residential development as well as commercial. It has brought tourists who spend outside the casino.

It has provided scholarships and school equipment, gave relief to property taxes…the list is far too long to include every benefit that has been bestowed on our neighboring county.

There was a major effort to defeat this measure when it was offered by vote here in Cerro Gordo county; the only local prepotent I remember pushing for it was local realestate salesman and attorney, Tom Jolas. He took heat for his position.  Those residents living here that the opposing faction wanted to protect from the evils of gambling drive there now just as frequently as if it were in our own backyard…which when you stop and think of it; it is in our backyard…only twenty minutes to the north. The only difference is  we’re not counting the money.

Locally the Historic Park Inn Hotel was renovated using money that first fell on that green felt table were the dice told the story. It came from the flashing lights and melodic sounds of the slot machines, and poker games that were dealt late into that dark night.  So what exactly did we achieve here besides the loss of hundreds of jobs and some 22 million in benefits?  We really showed those people who was boss didn’t we…….


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