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Casino petitioners refile ballot items

The chief petitioners - both from Lake Oswego - for a proposed off-reservation casino Monday re-filed ballot measures with the Secretary of State's office.

According to their projections, the project would generate an estimated $200 million annually for Oregon schools and other services along with creating more than 10,000 new jobs.

The ballot measures were approved by the Oregon Supreme Court and certified for signature gathering for the 2006 election-cycle. In June, the petitioners decided to place the measures before voters on the November 2008 ballot.

'These are the same measures which were recently approved by Oregon's highest court,' said chief petitioner Bruce Studer. 'Today's filings allow us to continue to build upon the strong and growing stream of support the project has already generated.'

Studer, a Lake Oswego investor at the helm of Oregon Gaming and Entertainment, formed the pro-casino agency with attorney Matt Rossman, also of Lake Oswego, a little more than a year ago.

The measures will ask voters to approve the development of a world-class hotel and resort entertainment center at the vacant site of the former Multnomah Kennel Club in Wood Village. The proposed facility would replace the 53-year-old licensed racetrack with a gaming center, resort hotel, spa, live theater, retail shops, upscale restaurants, as well as other entertainment venues.

The first measure will ask voters to approve a single commercial taxable casino in Oregon by replacing the ban on non-tribal casinos that was adopted when the Oregon Lottery was passed by voters in 1984. The second measure dedicates 25 percent of the gaming revenues, an estimated $200 million annually, to public schools and other vital services and provides for state oversight and regulation of a resort casino.

Studer noted the proposals continue to maintain that no taxpayer dollars will be used to build, operate or regulate the facility.

Additional information can be found on the group's Web site at www.goodfororegon.org.