23 August 2000
the Honorable Mel Carnahan, Governor
The State of Missouri
201 West Capital Avenue,
Jefferson City, Missouri, 65101
Dear Governor Carnahan:
By now, it is no secret that the little town of Kimmswick, MO has steadfastly resisted a gambling casino on its doorstep. As a Kimmswick resident, merchant, and more recently, alderman, I can honestly say that we have resisted a casino since it was first proposed. We are not saying that people shouldn't gamble, but we are saying that Kimmswick is not the place for a casino. By wishing for this, we do not wish a casino on any other community.
I have included with this letter a page and a half of reasons and objections to a casino on the very edge of town. I really hope that you will read them.
A good part of our dismay over the situation is the serious shortcoming of the gambling law that offers no protection to communities chosen for a casino. It leaves me wondering where the legislators were when the laws governing gambling were drafted. Since the law was written by the gambling industry, I have to view it like putting the fox in charge of the chicken coop.
Another item of extreme irritation is the cavalier disregard for the livelihoods and businesses of the areas closest to casino sites. Kimmswick is a town in which honest, hard working people have been able to successfully ply their trades. The people who run these small businesses are flesh-and-blood people who represent a natural diversity of enterprises that would be snuffed out by a casino. I do not believe that these are idle statements. Our resistance to casinos is very arrogantly scorned by county officials, but we feel that we are doing what is right for the families and businesses of our town and adjacent communities.
The fact that two Isle of Capri casino boats left two sites in Iowa in July 1992, because they were not making enough money, causes me to doubt the integrity of a company. They walked out on a contract with two cities. We quite obviously do not trust the people in this industry. They are not concerned about people. Only their money.
We need someone in a position of authority and trust who could call this thing off. It would be a sterling declaration in the legacy of an outgoing officer.
Thank you for your attention to this letter.