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Casino coming to the council table

Lloydminster City Council will be discussing the proposal for a casino in the Border City on Monday.

The agenda for Monday’s upcoming meeting indicates council will watch two public presentations in relation to the topic, before discussing whether or not to approve a permit for further development on the land slated for the casino project. The first presentation will come from the Lloydminster Ministerial Association, and the second from the Border Tribal Council.

The chair of the Lloydminster Ministerial Association, Pastor Tim Acey, has previously expressed a desire for a plebiscite on the proposal.

“On a question like this, we’re not voting dollars and cents, we’re not voting on a new building for the city or anything like that, we’re voting on a moral, very much a community issue, that has been a hot button topic in the past,” said Acey, when speaking to 106.1 The Goat in May.

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“We would like to see as many people’s input into this as possible, and one way that can happen is in a plebiscite.”

If approved, the permit would allow the applicant to bring forward more development proposals for the land in question, which is located near the Microtel Inn and Suites and the Lloydminster and District Co-op Gas Bar in the east end of the city.

The leaders of both Little Pine First Nation and Onion Lake Cree Nation have indicated their involvement with the project in previous public statements. The Saskatchewan government has also given conditional approval for a casino to be set up in Lloydminster.

On the application documents included in the council agenda, the owner of the development is listed as Little Pine Business Developments Inc. and the applicant for the development is the Border Tribal Council.

A notice of the permit application was previously circulated by the City in public notices included in newspapers, with a period allowing for the public to send in their opinions about the application to the municipal government.

On Monday, council will decide whether or not to approve the discretionary use of a casino. If this proposal passes, the developers will have to consult with the municipal government for any further development on the land beyond the casino project. They will also have to come up with a set of plans around site grading, services and utilities, storm water management, and a traffic impact assessment.

Also noted in the council documents is correspondence from city residents voicing their concerns about the project. A total of 160 letters were received by the municipal government, which illustrate a range of opinions on the proposal, such as taxation, the age of participants, and employment practices.

A response from the City about additional development permits indicates there will be a need for more permits issued if development proceeds. One citizen also asked if they could build a fence around their property, so they “wouldn’t have to look at it.”

At the end of the administration report detailing what will come before council, the proposal is found to align with two strategic objectives of the municipal government’s corporate plan.

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