Crowd voices opposition to proposed Gila River casino 5-10-07

MESA, Ariz. (AP) - So many came out Wednesday night to speak against
a proposed casino on the Gila River Indian Nation that the fire
department was forced to order several people to go outside a meeting
hall and listen on loud speakers.

Tribal leaders say another casino is needed to take advantage of
Indian gaming while critics say the project will only interfere with
their way of life.

To reservation resident Lisa Solarez, Gila River already makes plenty
of money with its present casinos.

When a show of hands was asked for early in the meeting, the majority
of the crowd showed their opposition to current plans for Gila
River's Lone Butte Casino. And many Chandler residents who live just
across Hunt Highway, the dividing line between the city and the Gila
River Community, said they fear the casino will bring in crime, drunk
drivers and a large increase in traffic through the city.

The public has until May 25 to submit written comments to the Gila
River Indian Community Planning and Zoning Commission before
commissioners make their recommendations to the Tribal Council.