Facing an uncertain political climate, California's Indian tribes are commissioning a high-profile study designed to show the economic benefits of tribal casinos. OP: And of course, it will be objective, right? The tribes want the whole truth, right? Pechanga has hired experts before and then disregarded the evidence when it didn't go their way.
The study, to be released later this year, will be led by one of California's most prominent economists: Chris Thornberg of Beacon Economics consulting in Los Angeles.
"The main thing is letting California legislators and the public know that Indian gaming is working," said Susan Jensen, spokeswoman for the California Nations Indian Gaming Association. The association is co-sponsoring the study with the Tribal Alliance of Sovereign Indian Nations and the California Association of Tribal Governments.
OP: This must also tell the story of the hundreds of Native Americans thrown back into poverty by tribes who exterminated them from the membership rolls. The losses are nearly half a BILLION DOLLARS.
Thornberg said he'll prepare an independent look at Indian gambling without any thought to political implications. "From my perspective, this is a matter of doing an economic survey," he said. "We're not weighing in on the pros or cons."
Indian casinos in California have become a $7.3 billion-a-year business, and a considerable political force, in the past decade. But the tribes with casinos still are grappling with questions about their status.
Read more: http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/03/25/2323668/california-indian-tribes-commission.html#ixzz1HcvNAQkI