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Casino Investigated in California. 2005-08-07
The state of California is now investigating complaints of unsafe working conditions and improper waste disposal at one of their casinos. The Campo Indian Tribe's Golden Acorn Casino is that casino. The governorís office is in the direction of investigating the claim.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's office is conducting the investigation to know whether or not the claims are true. The investigation comes about in response to a letter from county Supervisor Dianne Jacob, whose district includes the area where the Golden Acorn is situated. Jacob wrote the letter July 21, after The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that wastewater with 700 times the amount of coli form bacteria allowed in the state, was used in the area behind this casino.
After the news broke out residents and businesses on or near the reservation became nervous because they rely on groundwater for drinking and cooking. This is where Jacob asked the governor to step in, because it is out of county jurisdiction. American Indian land is independent from counties, even when serious risk to public health is the problem.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency inspected the casino's treatment plant, this year, but forwent certain testing methods. They did not test the water for harmful bacteria or require the casino to provide safety equipment for workers. The story that was published in June told the story of possible poor conditions.
Since the story, and also in the past few days, the tribe finished installing a fence around the field where wastewater was found. Ray Cruz, who is in charge of casino facilities, is trying to make things better. Does that mean the claim is correct, and the casino is guilty of waste? Itís hard to know but the governorís office is still producing an investigation on such claims.
(By Andrea)