Garden Grove officials met with a famous casino developer Steve Wynn in order to discuss building an Indian casino and resort just blocks from Disneyland. The project, developed by Mesa Grande Band of Mission Indians, a San Diego County tribe, aims to build a resort with shopping, restaurants and live entertainment akin Las Vegas.
The city, located in Califirnia’s Orange County, is currently considering selling as much as 45 acres to the tribe, reported Associated Press as quoted by Newsday.com.
“We have the opportunity to bring in the most premier resort developer to Orange County and create an attraction unlike anything else in California. If people want to focus on just the gaming, then they’re being very shortsighted,” City Manager Matt Fertal said.
City officials admitted they met with Wynn earlier this year to discuss the project. Wynn is famous for his building of the Bellagio, Mirage and Treasure Island casinos in Las Vegas, confirmed this information but said they were “based on hypothesis on top of hypothesis.” “There are no negotiations,” Wynn said in a statement.
The deal, which stirred a lot of controversy, has many foes including the city’s mayor, Bruce Broadwater. Orange County Supervisor Chuck Smith, whose district includes Garden Grove, said he was also opposing the idea. “It’s too close to Disneyland, which is a family resort,” Smith said. “I don’t care what they say about these casinos being family-oriented, they really aren’t. It’s not a good fit.”
According to the reports, a compact was due to be signed this week between the Lytton Band of Pomo Indians and the state allowing the tribe to build what could be one of the world’s largest casinos on a site in San Pablo, across the Bay from San Francisco. The tribe will pay up to 25 percent of its gambling profits to the state. This amount surpasses those payment established for five other tribes in agreements with California governor Schwarzenegger.