LAKEVILLE – Residents of Lakeville rejected Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah’s proposal for a casino in the city, by voting against it by 10-1 ratio on Saturday. Derek Maksy, Board of Selectmen Chairman expressed that the residents have opined against the casino for Lakeville. Aquinnah intended to put casinos in the two towns, but could not get their support. Like Lakeville, Freetown’s residents also voted against a casino in the city by 3-1 ratio on Tuesday.
People opposing the casinos in the city raised their voices with anti-casino remarks and held anti casino signs too. Despite heavy rains, they stood by their anti-casino intentions. Sue Murray, a Lakeville resident said that any casino in the city would put adverse effect upon the town and its schools. Freetown residents also opined against the casino and said that it would devastate their peaceful communities. Rhonda Silvia-Alves, a resident from East Free Town also disapproved the casino in the city by saying that everything would be disturbed if the casinos come into existence. Few persons said that unwanted elements could enter the towns when the casinos start operating. Sylvester Zienkiewicz, a resident from Lakeville said that we would have to bear the unnecessary people if the casinos are approved for the city. In fact, the persons opposing the casinos made up their mind to make their anti-casino campaign a success.
Even though the public opinion was against the casinos, Cheryl Andrews-Maltais, chairperson of Aquinnah was optimistic about their plans. She said that the projects would be pursued vigorously and all alternatives would be explored to make the plan a success. She added that the tribe would approach the residents of both the towns and persuade them by making them understand everything in the right perspective. The state would also be approached in this regard, she said. She was hopeful of positive dialogues with the state. As regards the legal options, Andrews-Maltais said that nothing could be ruled out.
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