Premier needs to clean up casino mess immediately
To the Editor,
During the week of Jan. 3, CBC Vancouver ran an exposé on organized crime laundering money in Vancouver area gambling casinos.
The allegations put forth in this exposé are very serious and probably true. They are another black stain on the record of the Gordon Campbell government.
To help you better understand the culpability of Campbell and his cronies in this matter I would like to provide you with a brief history of our present BC government and legalized gambling:
• On August 16/01 Gordon Campbell told the Invermere B,C, Chamber of Commerce that he was opposed to the legalization of gambling casinos in B.C.
• Later in 2001 Campbell issued the Liberals’ “New Era Document” which was filled with many promises one of which was that they would not expand gambling in B.C.
• In May of 2003 Campbell and his cronies quietly lifted the cap on the number of slot machines permitted in casinos.
• In 2001 the B.C. government’s annual take from legalized gambling was $414 million. In 2009 it was $1.1 billion. That’s an increase of 265 per cent over eight years and it’s still going up.
• From 2002 to 2007 Campbell’s B.C.’s Liberals received $250,000 in contributions from gambling interests.
• In 2010 the government approved a $450-million expansion of the Edgewater Casino at B.C. Place.
• The government has also been subsidizing some of the casino building expansions.
Getting back to money laundering the casino owners know that it is going on but do nothing to stop it. The government also does nothing to stop it.
It is obvious that our government is in bed with the casinos, and if the casinos are in bed with organized crime then we have a strong connection between our elected officials and criminals that we the people of B.C. must not tolerate.
We must insist that the new premier clean up this mess immediately.
Jim Galloway, Brisco, BC