In the midst of ongoing lawsuits, litigation and warnings from the state of Arizona, the Tohono O’odham Nation will not stop construction of their off-reservation Glendale casino project. Tribal Chairman Ned Norris Jr. says that they are spending $200 million on the first phase of the project which broke ground in August of last year and that 1,300 jobs are currently at stake.
The casino is scheduled to open this year in spite of the fact that the Arizona Department of Gaming, backed up by recently elected governor Doug Ducey, has threatened to withhold certification from the facility.
In a press release Chairman Norris said, “The Nation is creating jobs and economic benefits for all of Arizona, while some of our elected officials seem focused only on protecting the market share of a few wealthy interests. Support for this project is overwhelming and we will not be deterred from our commitment to seeing this project through.”
City of Glendale officials are backing the tribe and the city has entered into a revenue-sharing agreement covering 30 years that will bring in more than $20 million for essential city services and infrastructure.
Glendale city attorney, Michael Bailey is quoted in media as having told the Arizona Department of Gaming, “The City and Nation are partners in the West Valley Resort and a decision that negatively affects the Nation negatively impacts the City of Glendale and its residents.”