Gambling in the Glades?by Jennifer Sorentrue | December 1st, 2009
Fresh off vacation, Palm Beach County Commission Chairman Burt Aaronson said a casino might be just the boost the embattled Glades region needs.
“It is something to think about,” he said.
Aaronson, a cruise maven and tourism booster, also said the county should do more to help bring slots to the Palm Beach Kennel Club. The club, he said, has been at a “disadvantage” since state lawmakers allowed Broward’s parimutuel facilities to have slots.
“The fact of the matter is we do have gambling here and to put the Palm Beach Kennel Club at a disadvantage over the others is a crime.”
Allowing gambling in the Glades would help bring economic development to the region, Aaronson said.
The economic downturn caused depression levels of unemployment in the region this summer — 40 percent when the number of people who have given up looking for work is included. It has also left Palm Beach County’s three cities on Lake Okeechobee – Belle Glade, Pahokee and South Bay – saddled with mounting debt and dwindling property tax revenues.